MUNCIE — Crown Point setter Alex Equihua said that she was honored when she heard her name called after the Bulldogs lost in the Class 4A state championship match.

The senior was named the game's Mental Attitude Award winner, with $1,000 going into the general scholarship fund at Crown Point in Equihua's name.

"I am super grateful to have the opportunity to get the award," Equihua said. "I owe it to my teammates. It's not all about me, but without them, Crown Point wouldn't have made it this far. You think of how far we've gotten, a few years ago no one had heard of Crown Point for volleyball."

Equihua, who has committed to play volleyball at the University of Indianapolis, is the school's record holder in assists and added another 20 in the 4A game Saturday. She is also involved in C.P.'s Best Buddies program, NHS, Cass, Junior Rotary and the Bulldogs' Athletic Council.

Group prayer: After Andrean won the Class 2A state championship match, both teams gathered at mid-court and held the hands of an opposing player.

The two teams prayed together, with silence in the crowd.

After the "amen," both squads hugged and celebrated on their respective ends of the court.

Both Andrean and Christian Academy are religious-based schools.

Return to glory: Only Crown Point and Christian Academy graced the state title floor in 2016. Christian Academy was the runner-up in Class A and the Bulldogs were the runners-up in Class 4A.

Last season, there were five returning teams from the 2015 championships: Cathedral (4A), Yorktown (3A), Providence (3A), Wapahani (2A) and Christian Academy (A).

Class participation: The Class A and 3A matches were won in three games, similar to the 2A match.

Lafayette Central Catholic beat Hauser in the Class A tilt, 26-24, 25-18, 25-15. Junior Gretchen Kuckkan led the Knights (30-5) with 21 kills.

New Castle handled Brefeuf Jesuit, 25-11, 25-20, 25-15, in Class 3A as a balanced attack from Melani and Mabrey Shaffmaster helped the Trojans to 46 kills.

Quick exit: The 2017 edition of the state finals marked the first time since 2002 — before rally scoring — that all of the championship matches were won in three games.

In '02, Muncie Central swept Penn for the 4A title and Muncie Burris beat Brownstown Central for the 2A crown.


Sports Director

Hillary has covered prep, pro and college sports -- and even a Dixie Baseball World Series -- for newspapers north and south of the Mason-Dixon Line since 1995.