BY TRENTON LIVELY firstname.lastname@example.org
Strathmore’s varsity volleyball team beat Monache 3-0 at home on Thursday, making the Marauders the second straight East Yosemite League team to fall at the hands of the Spartans.
Even though the score doesn’t reflect it, this was a closely contested match from beginning to end. The Marauders had a distinct height advantage and a starting front row of players that on paper were the easy favorites to win, but the Spartans were not intimidated and they showed it with their play.
Strathmore jumped out to a 12-5 lead in the first set, but let off the gas and let Moncahe get back in. The Spartans would go on to win the first set 25-22. The second set was a back and forth battle with neither team being able to grab much momentum to go on a long run. Strathmore’s front row stepped up and made some good plays to tie the set at 22 -22. They went on a run and had the advantage heading into the set point, and were able to come up with the perfect dig, set and kill play assisted by Kandyce Gurrola and finished by Vanessa Lopez to take the set 25-23.
Monache tried to get in the game in the third set,but the determined Spartans refused to let any kind of runs get going. Brookyn Beavers had a big block to tie the set 17-17, and the Marauders went ahead by three 20-17. However, in the end it was not enough and the Spartans never gave up fighting back to tie the set at 20-20 and ended up winning the third on an ace by Kristen Gomez completing the sweep.
“I think we played okay, but we didn’t bring the energy,” said Monache Head Coach Kyle Newlin.
For Strathmore Lopez had 15 digs, 13 kills, three blocks and three aces. Teammates Callie Albison contributed 21 digs, seven kills, four aces and two blocks, Josie Lopez contributed 14 digs, 12 kills, five blocks and two aces, and Gomez contributed 10 digs, eight kills and the ace that won the game.
“I’m very proud of them, I had nothing to say to my team in the locker room,” said Strathmore Head Coach Mary Lybarger. “Although this victory is kind of bitter sweet, because it’s against my alma mater.”
Both Strathmore and Monache will have to prepare for league play, and the Marauders next match will be against defending EYL champions Tulare Union.