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OAKLAND — Becca Zaber didn't mind missing her favorite class on Monday.

The Visitation Academy senior was excused from the 2 p.m. Advance Placement Chemistry class to participate in the annual early-out volleyball contest at private school rival Ursuline Academy.

But her absence came on the day of a key early-term test. So the honors student simply took the exam in the morning before leaving school at noon for the match.

As it turned out, Zaber aced both tests.

The defensive specialist turned in an impressive all-around performance to help the Vivettes to a 25-18, 25-14 win over the Bears in front of the entire Ursuline student body.

Hours earlier, Zaber nailed 18 of 20 questions to pass the chemistry test with flying colors.

Still, she was not entirely happy with her academic effort.

"I was hoping to get them all right," she said. "Or maybe miss just one."

Zaber had no complaints about her on-court effort as the Vivettes claimed the Champions Cup for the first time since 2006. Ursuline had won the last 13 early-out contests.

The traveling trophy is given to the school that wins the volleyball contest. It gets to keep it until the teams meet on the basketball court.

Zaber, who plays club volleyball for the Rockwood Thunder, is going to Arkansas State University on a volleyball scholarship and hopes to major in engineering. So her performance in the classroom is extremely important.

Both worlds collided on Monday and she came away happy.

"A long day — but a fun one," Zaber said.

The annual contest rotates between the two schools. Students at Ursuline were let out of their classes to attend the 2 p.m. match. After the 51-minute affair, they went back to their final classes of the day.

"It's fun and it gives the girls a chance to play in front of (students) that otherwise would not come to the game," explained Ursuline coach Laura King, a 2010 Ursuline grad who played in the contest several times.

The Vivettes (4-3) sent the Ursuline student body back to class in a sour mood. The Vivettes, with four freshmen in the starting lineup, controlled play from start to finish.

Freshman Grace Weikel led a balanced attack with a match-high eight kills. She also added a trio of blocks.

Another of the freshman corps, Giovanna Bonifacio chipped in with five kills and three blocks. senior Ally George added six kills. Grace Pund, Mia Maddock and Grace O'Grady also put down big hits.

The sister duo of freshman Emily Stahlman (13 assists) and senior Kaitlin Stahlman (11 assists) was flawless in running the 5-2 offense.

"It was a combination of freshman and seniors getting the job done, which was really cool," Visitation coach Shenee Boyle said. "We played some good, clean volleyball."

The Vivettes used a 6-0 run to go up for good 13-9 in the opening set. Emily Stahlman served five of the points. A kill from Bonifacio and a nifty block from Weikel triggered the blitz.

"At first, it was a little scary because most of the crowd energy was on their side," Weikel said. "Once we got used to it, we just started playing like we normally do."

Ursuline (0-4) climbed to within 22-16 behind a block from Sophie Laaker.

But Visitation regained control, thanks in part to Pund's strong run at the service line.

The Vivettes parlayed a 13-1 run into a 17-9 lead in the nightcap. Five different players recorded kills for the first five points of the blitz. Senior Katie Borst added two points from the service line. Pund nailed down the contest with a thundering hit.

Visitation appeared calm and collected in its first away match of the season.

"We're so young in so many spots — you know we have some learning to do," Boyle said. "But they're getting the hang of things."

Ursuline lost the majority of its players from last year's 23-14 team that reached the sectional round. Anna Bair and Lucie Ramsey have graduated.

But King sees some brighter days ahead.

"Today, we just got out-worked," King said. "We're learning as we go."

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