The Lafayette Lancers have been one of the area's top powerhouse programs in girls' volleyball for many years.
Lafayette is currently ranked No. 1 in the St. Louis metro area. And it added to its trophy case on Tuesday night by defeating district rival and host Eureka in four sets to win the Class 5, District 2 championship.
The district championship is the 15th for the Lancers in the past 16 seasons. Lafayette will face host Jackson in the Class 5 state quarterfinals on Saturday at 1 p.m. The winner earns a berth to the Final Four on November 3-4 in Cape Girardeau.
The Lancers have been spearheaded by a trio of talented players in seniors Caitlyn Little, Layne Witherspoon and sophomore Maya Witherspoon. Little is a 5'10" senior outside hitter who had 12 blocks in the championship match. Layne Witherspoon is a 5'11" senior middle blocker who had seven kills and the final block that clinched the district championship. She will be playing at Eastern Illinois next season. Maya Witherspoon is Layne's younger sister and a very talented outside hitter. She had 13 kills on Tuesday, which added to her team-high total of 255 for the season.
All three players compete on the elite club level circuit during the summer with the Rockwood Thunder Volleyball Club. Little and Layne Witherspoon played for the 18U team last summer while Maya Witherspoon played with the 17U team.
As seniors, Little and Witherspoon have been a part of three district championship teams, including a state-runner up team in 2019 when they were freshmen. After winning a district title, their goal is to finish their careers by getting to the Final Four and winning a state championship.
"It feels so amazing to win another district championship," Little said. "Eureka has a great team so it was a great feeling to win again. It's been so much fun. It's hard to believe that it's almost over.
Said Witherspoon, "It was definitely more intense. I definitely did not want it to be my last game and that is how we played."
For Witherspoon, the opportunity to share the championship moment in her senior year with her younger sister made Tuesday night even more special.
"I love it," Witherspoon said. "This year has been so much fun playing together. We've always played against each other in club volleyball in scrimmages, so it's definitely great to be together."
Lafayette has won a total of 16 district championships along with six consecutive state championships from 2011-2016.
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