BOZEMAN — Hang banner No. 14 for Huntley Project.
The Red Devils outlasted District 4B rival Shepherd to claim the 2022 State B volleyball title. Shepherd swept Project in the first championship, but Project returned the favor in the second title tilt to give legendary coach Iona Stookey her 14th title.
"It's very emotional for me. I feel like they're all my daughters. I spend a lot of time with them. Every single one of those kids has been with me since kindergarten," Stookey said. "I teach PE, I'm their PE teacher, and I watch them grow up into amazing young ladies and great volleyball players.
Project faced Shepherd in both the district and divisional titles games before reaching state, so after losing the first championship match Stookey remained calm.
"They have a ton of heart. All season long we've tried to play defense, keep the ball in play, better the ball, play with a lot of heart," Stookey said. "When I went in the locker room I kind of had a smile on my face and said, 'Hey, it's even. Now may the best team win, and the team that makes the least amount of mistakes is going to win the match.' And that match we did. We didn't the first one."
Project was led by Harlie Murphy's 18 kills. Murphy also had three blocks, but it was the number of digs that stood out. Project had 110 digs, while Shepherd had 88, a testament to both teams' will to win.
Shepherd was led by Aubrey Allison, who had 10 kills and 25 digs.