But the Lady Raiders didn't lose their composure on their way to a fourth consecutive championship.
Their 27-25, 25-21, 19-25, 25-19 victory over Chattahoochee at Marietta High School was as close as might be expected between the top two ranked teams in the state.
But Walton (44-6) settled down to win the school's ninth overall state title. As The Marietta Daily Journal pointed out, this sets up the possibility next season of matching the Walton's five consecutive crowns from 1998 to 2002.
The odds are good for that happening. Walton has only four seniors on this team -- Leah Jackson, Brooke Landon, Kate Schwartz and Jessica Sloan -- who won state titles every year.
But the Lady Raiders have plenty of star power returning, including junior Lindsay Seagraves and sophomore Celeste Fitzgerald, who were key parts of this year's team.
For head coach Suzanne Fitzgerald, this is also her fourth title. An English teacher at Walton, she took over the reins in 2006. Her daughter is Celeste Fitzgerald.
The rest of the Walton roster:
- Ashley Dean, Maria Granros, Leo Hausman, Ashley Miller, Maddie Quirk
- Leanne Villanueva
- Mary Belle Gosch, Dalaney Hans, Isabel Kun