They made state history and earned national attention for their winning streak.
But after 158 consecutive wins, the girls tennis team has discovered what defeat feels like.
The Lady Raiders fell 3-2 to Roswell Thursday in the Georgia Class AAAAA quarterfinals, also ending a string of eight state championships.
Roswell rallied from a set down to win at No. 2 doubles to put away Walton, and to go down in history as the school that ended the longest all-sports winning streak in Georgia high school history.
“We had to lose sometime,” Walton coach Christy Page told The Marietta Daily Journal. “That was an unbelievable match."
Page, formerly the Walton JV coach, was in her first season as head coach, succeeding the retired coach Roberta Manheim, and had only two returning players to work with after the graduation of six seniors.
But the Lady Raiders still finished with an 11-1 record as inexperienced players quickly discovered the legacy -- and the spotlight -- they inherited. After last year's title, was inducted in the Atlanta Sports Hall of Fame.
As Page told the GPB Sports Blog earlier this month: "I'm sure people would love to see the streak continue, but they would be very happy with the success we have had so far this season if the streak ended, especially with a completely new team."