Carrollton High School will be entering the tournament for the second time in as many years while Temple will be making its first trip in four years.
The Lady Trojans (24-8-1) enter the Class AAAA tournament as the No. 2 seed out of Area 6-AAAA following a runner-up finish in the area tournament over the weekend.
“We were really excited. We fought hard on Saturday in the area tournament. It was definitely a goal of ours to make it to state and once we had our record 5-1 in our area it was going to be our goal to host a state game,” Carrollton coach Kasey Austin said.
Wednesday’s first round matchup against Redan at 6 p.m. will be the first home volleyball playoff game at Carrollton. After being the No. 4 seed last year and having to face a region champion the Lady Trojans are excited about the opportunity to play at home.
“That’s going to be huge for us. When we have had some home matches our crowds have been great and supportive. We’re hoping that they’ll show us that support again. It really does help our girls to know they have that crowd behind them. We’re used to going in, last year, we were the underdogs and away every game. It’s nice to see some familiar faces,” Austin said.
Along with the team’s success at the area tournament there were a pair of Lady Trojans honored by the area. Lauren Sanders and Olivia Huffman were both nominated as Area 6-AAAA players of the year.
While Carrollton is making a return trip to the tournament the Lady Tigers (4-18) are entering for the first time after a four-year absence from postseason play.
“We’re very excited. They’ve worked hard this season and, for my seniors, they’re obviously ecstatic because this is the first time since they’ve been here that they’ve made it to the state tournament,” Temple coach Jessica Hok said.
Temple didn’t play in an area tournament, but had its regular season success earn them a No. 3 seed in Class AA. They will, however, have to make the three and a half hour trip to face second-seeded and 10th ranked A.R. Johnson out of Augusta at 5 p.m. on Wednesday.
“We’ll be leaving school, stopping and having lunch and then spending about three and a half hours on a bus. It’s going to be a hard trip for the girls, but hopefully they get off the bus and are ready to hit the ground running,” Hok said. “We’re excited, they’ve worked hard and we’ll see what happens on Wednesday.”