KATY – A team fueled by the doubters is a dangerous one.
Fulshear felt like they had something to prove in 2020. Being the reigning Class 4A State Champions wasn't enough anymore. Now, in Class 5A the team felt like they had to prove themselves all over again.
Well, doubters proven wrong.
Fulshear defeated College Station 3-0 (25-19, 25-20, 25-18) to capture the Region III-5A Championship on Thursday night at the Merrell Center and punched the program's ticket back to the UIL State Tournament.
"It's a big deal, especially since we're in 5A now. We proved our point that we could compete with any type of competition," Fulshear junior Alexis Dacosta, who is verbally committed to Baylor, said. "We're ready to go get another ring."
FULSHEAR IS HEADING BACK TO STATE!!!! An ace by @AlexisDacosta9 finishes off the sweep. Fulshear is heading to the State Semifinals. @AlexisDacosta9 with the ace for the win!! #txhsvb @FULSHEARVB @FulshearABC @lcisdathletics @UIL_AD @Fulshear_HS @ellieechterr @AvaUnderwood16 pic.twitter.com/pGk4BS92N2
— vypehouston (@vypehouston) December 4, 2020
Fulshear awaits to see who it will face in the UIL State Semifinals early next week, which will be hosted at a neutral site before the UIL State Championships are held in Garland on Saturday, December 12.
The Chargers are two wins away from becoming just the third program since 2000 to win a second-straight title after moving up a classification, the first since Decatur in 2014.
"I'm so excited," Fulshear coach Sydney Gotcher said. "They're so great. It's been such a weird year. We haven't had the tournaments and the bonding we usually get and so just to be still playing right now when most teams are done is really awesome."
A big theme for the team this season was hitting the reset button.
They had to hit the reset button in all facets of their game, Gotcher said and doing that helped the team get to the point of now being back-to-back Regional Champions.
"I think we're the kind of team if we're underestimated, we use that fire to come back," Fulshear senior and LSU-signee Ellie Echter said. "Us not getting ranked as high as we thought we might, I think was pushing us as far as we could possibly go."
Relive the Game Below with VYPE Fort Bend's Roger Smith on the Call!
VYPE Postgame - Alexis Dacosta
VYPE Postgame: @FULSHEARVB junior @AlexisDacosta9 talks to VYPE after the Chargers punch their ticket to State. #txhsvb @FulshearABC @ellieechterr @AvaUnderwood16 @lcisdathletics @fulshear_fball @Fulshear_HS pic.twitter.com/aNnLot79k4— vypehouston (@vypehouston) December 4, 2020
VYPE Postgame - Fulshear Coach Sydney Gotcher
VYPE Postgame: @FULSHEARVB head coach Sydney Gotcher talks with VYPE after the game and talked about the program going back to #UILState @FulshearABC @fulshear_fball @Fulshear_HS @lcisdathletics @FulshearHoops @ellieechterr @AlexisDacosta9 @AvaUnderwood16 @KPRC2RandyMc pic.twitter.com/YyKFtljWsh— vypehouston (@vypehouston) December 4, 2020
VYPE Postgame - Ellie Echter
VYPE Postgame: @lsuvolleyball signee @ellieechterr is heading back to State. She helped @FULSHEARVB defeat College Station 3-0 on Thursday night. #txhsvb @AvaUnderwood16 @FulshearABC @Fulshear_HS @AlexisDacosta9 @UIL_AD #uilstate pic.twitter.com/MbSa9Qn4sn— vypehouston (@vypehouston) December 4, 2020
The reigning state champions Lucas Lovejoy Leopards (23-0, 14-0) are set to take on the McKinney North Bulldogs (23-3, 12-2) in the UIL Class 5A Volleyball State Championship Regional Finals on Thursday, December 3, 2020. Both teams are coming off of huge sweeps over their opponents in their respective portions of the bracket.
Lovejoy is barreling towards another state title after winning it all in the 2019-2020 season. With an undefeated season thus far, the Leopards have everything to lose as they continue to prove their dominance. Aside from being undefeated, Lucas Lovejoy has only lost a total of two sets this entire season. Fans can expect them to come out as consistent as ever against McKinney North. Lovejoy is coming off of a 3-0 sweep over Midlothian in the Regional Semifinal round of Texas high school volleyball playoffs.
McKinney North is continuing to prove to their fans just why they need to be fans. Only losing three matches all season, the Bulldogs are showing why they belong among the best volleyball players in the state. After only making three playoff appearances in the last five seasons, the Bulldogs can be expected to come out confident after huge wins this season over teams like Wylie East, Sherman, and Coppell. McKinney North is coming off of a 3-0 sweep over North Forney in the Regional Semifinal round of Texas high school volleyball playoffs.
This won't be the first time these two have faced off this season. Meeting twice before, once in October and once in November, the Leopards swept the Bulldogs both times. Although it's possible that we will see Lovejoy push into the state semifinals, it just might be too early to completely count out determined McKinney North.