Union Volleyball Teams Finish as State Champs

FORT SMITH, Ark. – This has been a successful season for Union Christian Academy’s junior and senior high volleyball teams who both earned the title of HCAA Volleyball All-State Champions. 

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The pressure was on this season for the UCA senior high volleyball team after they won the 2017 HCAA State Tournament. The Lady Eagles proved they were up to the challenge and had a 14-2 record in their regular season matches. They ended their 2018 season with an overall record of 20-2.

Midway through the season, the Lady Eagles were granted the request to advance to 3A classification, making them the smallest school to compete in this division at the HCAA All-State Volleyball Tournament. They ended the tournament with an undefeated 6-0 record and were named the HCAA 3A State Volleyball Champions, making them back-to-back state champions. Four Lady Eagles were named to the HCAA All-State Volleyball Teams: Annie Pitts (freshman), Kaylee Taylor (junior), Kristin James (senior), and Karoline Beeson (senior). They will have the opportunity to compete in the All-State volleyball match on Saturday, Oct. 27. 

Two UCA students also took spots on the State Tournament All-Tournament Team: Kristen James and Karoline Beeson. These players were selected among all the coaches in the tournament. Beeson received the most point votes from the coaches.

After losing in the state semifinals in 2017, the UCA Junior High Lady Eagles made a comeback and earned a winning record in regular season matches of 13-2. The Lady Eagles went 3-2 in the Wright Christian Academy Preseason Invitational Tournament, winning the Silver Bracket Tournament.

On Thursday, Oct. 4, the Junior High Lady Eagles became the HCAA 2A Junior High Volleyball State Champions in a 6-0 win. These wins brought the Lady Eagles to an end of season win/loss record of 22-4. One of these losses came to Life Christian in the preseason tournament who they defeated in the state tournament finals. Two UCA Lady Eagles were named to the 2018 HCAA All-Tournament Team: Lydia Pitts (sixth grade) and Madison Bryant (eight grade).

In his second season of coaching the Lady Eagles, Head Coach Richard Gunselman said he “could not be more proud of the team and admired how they improved their skills on the court while gaining a greater love for the game.” 

About Union Christian Academy

Union Christian Academy is a fully accredited Pre-k through 12th grade school serving the Arkansas River Valley. Union is located at 4201 Windsor Drive in Fort Smith. For more information about the school you can visit online at www.UnionEagles.org or call the administration offices at 479.783.7327