Westlake Volleyball Clinches Big Win Over Top-Ranked Lake Travis
Nov 03, 2023

Westlake Volleyball Clinches Big Win Over Top-Ranked Lake Travis

Reporting Texas TV

AUSTIN, Texas – The Westlake High School volleyball team celebrated a big win on Oct. 24 against rival Lake Travis High School, which is nationally ranked.

The Westlake Lady Chaparrals hosted the 6A district champions of region 26 for their senior night and district-closing game, which Westlake won in four sets: 25-18, 25-23, 23-25, 25-22. The Lady Chaparrals were the underdogs going into the game, as Lake Travis was ranked No. 13 in the nation by the American Volleyball Coaches Association and was on a 17-game winning streak.

Westlake head coach Miguel Saenz said he expects his team to use the confidence and momentum from the win as they head into the playoffs.

“To finish our regular season beating a team like Lake Travis, who I think is one of the best teams in the state of Texas, if not the best team, it’s just really good for us,” Saenz said.

Key players for Westlake included Lily Davis with 22 kills and 18 digs, Reese Emerick with a 100% hitting average and 23 digs, and Allie Hudgins with 16 kills and 12 digs.

Players for the Westlake Lady Chapparals (left) and the Lake Travis Lady Cavaliers huddle after a long rally that ended in a point for the home team during the Oct. 24 match at Westlake High School in Austin, Texas. (Janelle Tanguma/Reporting Texas TV)

“They just wanted it, and you can see it,” Saenz said. “They’re diving everywhere, hustling for every ball.”

Junior outside hitter Lily Davis has already committed to play beach volleyball for UT Austin under former UCLA All-American Stein Metzger. 2023 marks beach volleyball’s first year as a varsity program at UT, and Davis said she was the program’s first commit.

“[Metzger] is the best coach in the country,” Davis said. “The program is going to be amazing, and I’m so happy to be in the start of it.”

The future Longhorn leads the Lady Chaparrals in kills, aces and serve receptions. Coach Saenz said Davis has been crucial to the team’s success this season.

“I might be biased but I literally think she’s the best player in the state of Texas,” Saenz said. “She has put the team on her back and has carried us this whole season.”

Lake Travis won one set, but Westlake dominated the night. The Lady Chaparrals were strong at the back court against the Lady Cavaliers, as they racked up 84 digs against the district champions, 20 more than their team average and more than twice the national average.

Westlake players Claire Wernli (left), Emerson Butler and Allie Hudgins prepare for a Lake Travis serve. (Janelle Tanguma/Reporting Texas TV)

For the six seniors on the team, this was the last chance to get a district win against their longtime rivals. The Lady Chapparals won a tournament match in 2022, but the last time Westlake beat Lake Travis in a district game was in 2019.

“I’m just overjoyed,” senior Reese Emerick said. “To beat Lake Travis for the first time in four years, it’s surreal.”

Emerick will play college volleyball for UT and said she plans to enroll in university classes in Spring 2024.

Westlake finished third in the 26-6A district behind Lake Travis and Dripping Springs High School.

Westlake faced Vandegrift High School in the first round of the playoffs on Oct. 30 and won in four sets. The Lady Chaparrals now have an eight-game winning streak and will face Brandeis High School for the area championship on Nov. 2. The game will be at Smithson Valley High School.

After beating Lake Travis, Coach Saenz said he believes his team can make a long run in the postseason. His team has high aspirations to make it to the state tournament which begins Nov. 18.

“We’re looking to make a far run,” Saenz said. “We’ve been talking about [the] state [tournament] from the very beginning and I think they’re finally starting to realize what our potential is.”

Westlake secured its final district win of the season with a 25-22 victory in the fourth set. (Janelle Tanguma/Reporting Texas TV)