Nine is Devine

The Charlotte Latin Hawks: 2012 N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association 3A volleyball champions.

Charlotte Latin overcame a 2-0 deficit to rival Charlotte Country Day to claim its ninth consecutive N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association 3A volleyball championship, 3-2, on its home court Saturday, Oct. 27.

The Hawks finished the season 38-1 overall.

After her team fell behind, 2-0, in the match, Charlotte Latin coach Suzie Pignetti said she didn’t have to say anything to her team; she left that duty to seniors Emma Price and Eve
Davis.

“I went to turn in my lineup for the third game,” Pignetti said. “Emma and Eve took (the team) in the hallway. I don’t know what they said, but they came back a totally different team. They have been leaders on this team all year, and once again they refused to lose.”

Davis said the message was simple.

“We told them to fight and to never give up,” Davis said. “We told them that we believe in each and every one of them and that we were going to leave everything we had on the floor.”

Behind its senior stars, Charlotte Latin rebounded to win the next three games: 25-20, 25-15 and 15-8. Price and Davis earned their fourth state titles.

Price tallied 51 assists in the championship match and finished the season with 1,031. Price also recorded a match-high 32 kills and set an NCISAA record with 654 on the season, but she saved her best for last, taking over the championship match in the fifth game.

“Eve took over down the stretch,” Pignetti said. “She has been able to do that for us, and she came through at the end.”

The Hawks roster also included seniors Chandler Dalton and Brooke Brown; juniors Michaela Brown, Elizabeth Aucamp, Nicole Cockerham and Kellie Williams; sophomores Lily Beck, Carrie Mittl and Caroline Finke; and freshmen Dalila Mendygaziyeva and Chanin Scott.

Davis and Price began their high school careers winning the state title as freshmen on the Hawks’ home court and ended it the same way four years later.

“I’m speechless,” Price said. “When we were down, we knew it would go five games. We had to come back, and we were not going to let ourselves lose.”

Pignetti said coming from behind was special, but each championship has meant something different to her.

“Every (championship) at the time seems like it is the most special,” Pignetti said. “These kids want to win and they play hard, and I think they realized if they kept playing hard all game, it would work out.

“I don’t know how, but it did.”

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