Not much separated top-seeded Chaminade and two-time reigning champion Kellenberg Wednesday night.
A back-and-forth match gave way to a back-and-forth fifth set, but eventually Pat Bocchicchio, Brian Moran and the Flyers were able to pull away and capture their first boys volleyball league title since 2008.
Bocchicchio and Moran both had 19 kills to lead No. 1 Chaminade in its 3-2 win over No. 2 Kellenberg in the NSCHSAA league championship at Adelphi.
Matt Lattime had 36 assists, John Chave had 23 assists, and Santiago Agosti added 12 kills for the Flyers (16-1), who won, 25-19, 15-25, 25-20, 22-25, 25-19.
"It's great to finally bring the championship back to Chaminade," Bocchicchio said. "This was our goal for the last four years."
Agosti was named tournament most valuable player, marking an improbable end to his first season playing the sport. "Pat Bocchicchio told me to try out so I gave it a shot," Agosti said. "It was definitely the best decision I've made and this is a great way to end my high school career."
Little separated the two teams at the start of the deciding fifth set until Chaminade rallied to take a 17-13 lead. As had been the case throughout the match, Kellenberg (12-5) did not go down quietly, winning the next five points to take an 18-17 lead.
Chaminade finally got separation for good, finishing the match on an 8-1 run.
"They had such a spirit from the opening of the season," Chaminade coach Sal Trentacoste said. "They worked together and never gave up on themselves. I can't say enough about my players."
The Flyers had led two sets to one before Kellenberg jumped out to a 20-13 fourth-set lead and held off a late Chaminade rally to force a fifth set.
Before the start of the fifth, Moran said he told the team "we've been here before. We've done it, let's do it again. It's our season, we just need to take it."
Kellenberg's Ryan Branigan had 12 kills and 51 assists and was named league MVP after the match.
For Bocchicchio, Moran, Agosti and the other seniors, the day marked the end of a journey in more ways then one.
"We finished our last finals today, we finished high school, and we ended the day with a championship," Bocchicchio said. "This is probably one of the best moments of my life."