No. 3 story: State volleyball champs

    In dominating fashion, Craig Krull’s 2010 Bellmont girls volleyball team steamrolled through the class 3A playoffs, going 18-1 in total games, to claim the school’s second state volleyball championship in four years.
    The championship effort was voted as the Democrat’s No. 3 news story of 2010.
    The only game lost was to Yorktown at Plymouth Semistate. In the 3A championship match played at Worthen Arena at Ball State University, the Squaws were just that much better than defending state champion and top-rated Brebeuf Jesuit.
    The state 3A championship match turned into a community celebration as approximately 2,000 Bellmont fans made it like a home meet on steroids, rocking the arena for the entire match.
    That win marked the 19th consecutive victory for Bellmont, which closed out the superb season at 35-4.
    All-state senior front row players Alex Fuelling and Madison Schultz led the team most of the year, but when Bellmont got to the postseason several others stepped up in the clutch and all played well.
    In the sectional title win over Norwell, Fuelling socked in 18 kills and senior libero Chelsea Colclasure pulled up 21 digs. In the regional sweep of Western, junior middle hitter Payton Schultz had her career-best effort with 15 kills and junior Allison Gutierrez brought up 14 digs. Fuelling added 19 kills and Emily Pierce 5. In the semistate shocker over Yorktown, Payton again played spoiler with 16 kills and Gutierrez played sweeper with 18 digs.
    But in the title match, the Jesuit Braves were caught clueless at the start as senior Emily Pierce rattled off five kills to lead Bellmont to the 25-23 first-game win. The Squaws clobbered the shocked Jesuits in game two, 25-14, then Bellmont persevered in game three, 27-25.
    Junior setter Steph Shoup ignored sickness to post up 41 assists in that title match while Fuelling had 16 kills and Schultz 12. Colclasure added 19 digs and frosh Bailee Hankenson was a steady contributor when called on, showing off her front row power.
    “Everyone played well, especially Emily,” said Payton Schultz.
    “We had it all along. We had it in us. I’ll always remember how awesome we played.”
    “The whole time, from when we started with our summer conditioning, it was no matter who is on the team, we’re going to push together. Every single one of us wanted to win state, and we pulled together,” said senior Madison Schultz.
    And it was too much for Brebeuf to overcome.