BROOKINGS, S.D. (KELO) — After finishing last season as the class ‘AA’ volleyball runner-up, the O’Gorman Knights entered this year with high hopes of returning to the title game, and they ended up exceeding that.
O’Gorman earned a 3-1 match victory over Huron last night in the 2020 state championship, earning the Knights their sixth volleyball state title.
“This is just so much more special after last year. Just falling so short last year, we just wanted it so bad this year and we couldn’t be more happier right now,” Bergan Reilly said.
“It means that all of our hard work has paid off. We worked so hard for this, day in and day out and it showed tonight,” Raegen Reilly said.
O’Gorman finished the year with an undefeated 26-0 record and is only the second team in class ‘AA’ history to have a perfect season.
“I honestly can’t even describe it, it’s crazy. It’s just so few and far between and it’s not something teams do. It’s just crazy, so I have no words,” O’Gorman coach Emily Byrnes said.
The Knights relied on the experience and knowledge of their seven seniors.
“The chemistry that they had. They just brought it down to all levels and they were so accepting to every single one of us and that was the most special part of this team,” Bergan Reilly said.
“They’re absolutely incredible and we are so proud of every single one of them. They truly push each other all of the time and they push everyone around them, while making everyone feel involved,” Byrnes said.
Finishing as undefeated state champions is tough to do in any year. Accomplishing this during a pandemic made this season that much more special for the Knights.
“We were just so grateful to have a state and have a championship and so we just said ‘this is our last game no matter what, so just put it all out there’ and that’s what we did,” Bergan Reilly said.
O’Gorman is the first team in 29 years to finish the season as undefeated state champions. Sioux Falls Washington accomplished that feat in 1991.