ATHLETE OF THE WEEK: Eau Claire Regis volleyball state champs

The Eau Claire Regis volleyball team made it to the state title game back in 2003 and 2004 but came away empty handed. Third time's the charm as this Saturday the Ramblers won the school's first volleyball state championship.

"We're Regis and we're the new state champs," yelled the entire team.

The Ramblers brought home the gold ball in Division 3, finishing the season with a 37-5 record, but it was the journey of besting local teams in higher divisions, that gave the girls confidence.

"Once we beat Altoona and we beat Spencer, and we beat Stanley-Boyd, we won a lot of those big games, we knew that we could win," says sophomore Shea Brey.

Second year head coach Kendra Pagel may be young but her light and energetic attitude generated great respect from her team.

"She has been such an amazing coach. She's so positive and she's supportive, and when we need her there she's there to pick us up," says senior Alex Beckfield.

"She brings us all together as a team. She makes us laugh and we couldn't have done it without her," adds junior Haley Gibbons.

For Pagel, the success of the team was backed by the leadership of 9 seniors and a supportive community.

"It's all about the girls to me. I'm so proud of them. They make my job easy, honestly. They're like family to me. Their parents, the fans that we had this year, the student body that's been so supportive. It's just been wonderful," Pagel says.

As the gold ball makes itself at home in Eau Claire, the team says there could be more to come.

"I know next year will definitely be a rebuilding year but as long as we work hard i know we have a lot of good players coming up," says Brey.

"if they just step up and be the leaders, that we hope to have left the example of. I think they can do it," says Beckfield.

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