Benet Girls Volleyball Takes Second at State


Benet Girl’s Volleyball brings home the IHSA 2022 State Second Place Trophy

The Benet Girls Volleyball Team brought home new hardware for the trophy case this weekend as they took second at State. The IHSA State Finals took place in Redbird Arena at Illinois State University, which is about 100 miles south of Benet. The Final Four teams of the 4A Bracket competed in the two-day tournament, including Benet, Mother McAuley, Barrington, and St. Charles East. 

The two semifinal games took place Friday night. Benet played Barrington and Mother McCauley played St. Charles East. Benet defeated Barrington in two straight sets. After many lead changes, Benet had taken early advantage of the match with a first-set victory of 25-21. They kept the momentum going with a 16-9 run to start the second-set. Barrington could not recover as Benet’s offense did not let up, finishing Barrington off with a 25-16 win. Benet’s win against Barrington sent them to Saturday’s State Championship Game against Mother McCauley—who defeated St. Charles East 25-27, 25-17, 25-20. When asked about the final, senior and captain on the team Annie Eschenbach said “It means a lot because Benet has very high standards, so it means a lot to be here. We’re all really good friends and really close. It feels really good to make it to the finals and have a chance to win the title.”

The late-night championship game filled Redbird Arena with excitement as Benet’s large student section rivaled an even larger Mother McAuley student section. Benet started well with a 15-8 run against McAuley in the first-set. However, McAuley fought their way back with a 17-7 run to take the first-set 25-22. Benet stormed right back with a strong second-set, winning it 25-17. With each team triumphing in one set, the championship came down to the final set. Benet could not keep up with McAuley’s strong offense and fell 25-14. After the game Benet’s Head Coach Brad Baker spoke of his team and McAuley’s offense saying, “I don’t know if we ever had the best player on the court in anybody we beat. We just tried to be the best team and support each other.” Benet ended the season with an amazing 37-5 record.

The emotions were high as the girls hoisted the runner-up trophy, especially for the five rostered seniors who had just competed in their final high school game. However, Benet Girls Volleyball is not stopping at this year’s State Finals. Sophomore starting libero, Aniya Warren, sent a warning to the rest of the state, telling the Daily Herald, “It stinks to end like this, but we definitely now know the feeling and we don’t want to feel this again. This is going to make us work 10 times harder next year. I would be scared of us.”