City of Augusta honors Alleluia Community School for volleyball state championship

Published: Nov. 7, 2023 at 5:54 PM EST
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - The city of Augusta honored one of our smaller local schools for winning a state championship in volleyball on Tuesday.

Our Sports Director Dan Booth helped recognize the Alleluia Community Angels on their successful season.

Anytime a team wins a state championship, it’s a special occasion that should be celebrated.

Especially when that team has proven they have what it takes, not only to fight up in weight class but beat schools that have thousands of more students than they do.

According to Head Coach Meghan Janik, Alleluia Community School has a total of 38 high school students, 11 of whom play on their girls’ volleyball team.

Along the way to competing for and winning the state championship, the Angles defeated Grovetown, Evans, Harlem, Midland Valley, Aquinas, and Augusta Prep, while also taking on Lakeside, Greenbrier, and ARC.

The players we spoke with say every obstacle along the way to winning state was well worth it.

“Honestly it just feels like such an honor. I just feel really special, and I just love that our whole team gets to be recognized like this and we get acknowledged for the work that we all put in,” said Tess Samaha, senior.

Halle Janik, senior, said: “I’m definitely going to remember this forever, especially since last year we came in second and we got to play the same team as we did last year, and I think that they’re just going to keep getting better. We have some really awesome sophomores and awesome freshmen, and I think they’re just going to keep growing and we’re going to have an awesome program for the next couple of years.”

In addition to the significance of ending their high school careers on top, the seniors emphasized how important it was for them to defeat Praise Academy in the state championship, after losing to them in the state title match last season.

When looking at Alleluia’s strength of schedule, the fact that there’s only three seniors on this year’s team, and the deep-rooted family connections the team is built on, it’s easy to see why winning it all with this special group means the world to this team and their school.

“This year was so family oriented. My mom’s the coach and my sister is on this team, so that was just my favorite part, definitely,” said Halle.

Samaha said: “I played with family members, friends that I’ve had my whole life and just to get to win with them, compete with them, play alongside them. They’re all amazing. It was just super special to me, and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”

This is the Angels second state championship since 2017.

“I am so proud of these girls. I’m so happy that they’ve been able to be recognized this way, because it is really amazing what they did. I think it’s been really good for them to continually see very high-level competition and understand that they cannot just keep up with them, but in many instances beat them,” said Meghan.