The Liberty Hill Middle School Lions won a pair of volleyball plaques in this year’s Killeen ISD championship tournament.

Both the seventh- and eighth-grade Lions’ teams defeated the Patterson Middle School Cavaliers in straight-set matches during the finals of the tournament Nov. 9 at the Shoemaker High School gym.

The seventh-grade game ended 25-14, 25-21. The eighth-grade game finished at 25-19, 25-15.

For Liberty Hill seventh-grade coach Joy Cassagnol, the championship capped an undefeated season and was the second straight championship for the school’s seventh-graders.

She also celebrated with the eighth-graders, who managed to win their second middle school championship in a row after winning the seventh-grade title a year ago.

“I’m thrilled,” Cassagnol said following her team’s victory. “Shout out to Patterson. They played a heck of a game.”

She praised her team’s work ethic. “They hustled and worked together and communicated well. They trust each other.

“We want to keep it at home,” she said of the Lions’ growing stock of championship hardware.

“It means a lot to the school and to the team. I really want these girls to play in high school, to make the varsity and to continue to grow. I’m overjoyed.”

The eighth-grade Liberty Hill Lions also celebrated a straight-set victory, but their triumph followed two losses to the Patterson Cavaliers during the regular season.

“It’s amazing,” said coach Kylie Ray. “We’ve waited all season and today they brought the heat.

There’s so much pride in this team and so much school spirit here. This will be fun,” she said of the celebration to come.

Ray said she knew her team had it in them to win and urged them to focus.

“We’ve been working on the mental game,” she said. “I told them to visualize the game, but the positives and the negatives. What will you do? They didn’t hold their heads down.”

“We lost to Patterson twice,” she said. “The third time was redemption.”

LIBERTY HILL 8A DEF. UNION GROVE 8A 25-14, 25-14: The Lady Lions knocked the Grizzlies out of the tourney on Nov. 9.

Ella Perry served six points for Union Grove (10-4). Payton Craft, Desiree Boston, Grace Riggs each scored one point.

Yalia Gibson, Boston and Grace Riggsmade several key blocks for the Grizzlies. while Nevaeh Brown and Yulitza Ramos had kills. Elly Hanks, Maddison Culver, Katie Kennison, Payton Craft and Jayla Jordan also contributed for Union Grove.

Some information for this story was provided by reports submitted from coaches.

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