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Sports: A Noozhawk Partnership with Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table, The Lab, and American Riviera Bank
Boys Volleyball

Dos Pueblos Finishes Third in Annual DP Invitational Volleyball Tournament

Curren Malhotra of Dos Pueblos blasts a ball during playoff match against Quartz Hill. Malhotra had 54 kills on the day and was named to the all-tournament team. Click to view larger
Curren Malhotra of Dos Pueblos blasts a ball during playoff match against Quartz Hill. Malhotra had 54 kills on the day and was named to the all-tournament team. (JC Corliss / Noozhawk photo)

Curren Malhotra blasted 54 kills on the day to lead the Dos Pueblos boys volleyball team to a third-place finish in the 43rd annual DP Invitational at UCSB on Saturday.

The Chargers went 5-1 (11-1 in sets) on the day, losing only to Alemany (42-27) in the semifinals. It was DP's best finish since 2012.

Alemany won the championship, beating Palisades Charter in two sets.

Dax Galvan tips over an Alemany blocker during the DP Invitational semifinals. Click to view larger
Dax Galvan tips over an Alemany blocker during the DP Invitational semifinals. (JC Corliss / Noozhawk photo)

"The start of the semifinal versus Alemany was close, but their ball control and smart attacking to go with their excellent block found the Chargers struggling to find points," said DP coach Ehren Hug.

DP defeated Cathedral (25-10, 25-7), Antelope Valley (25-9, 25-12), Long Beach Poly (25-14, 25-14) and South Pasadena (25-13, 25-13) in pool play and outlasted Quartz Hill in a one-set playoff match, 42-38. 

"The boys were solid in pool play, passing consistently and finding all areas on the opponents' court on the attack," Hug said. "Setter Parker Crossland led another great day of volleyball for his team, getting all attackers involved. He was fired up today, plan and simple."

Hug also praised libero Daniel Willett, who picked up 29 digs on the day and served six aces.

"He was a force in serve receive and on defense, leading us to numerous long serving runs throughout the day and keeping his guys involved with constant chatter and attentiveness to all the little details that make this sport so challenging and fun," said Hug.

Willett and Malhotra were named to the all-tournament team.

Malhotra sparked DP to a comeback win over Quartz Hill in the playoffs. With the Chargers down 27-23, he and Max Raphael came up with big blocks to ignite the rally.

San Marcos beat Moorpark (25-16, 25-13) and Templeton (26-24, 25-16), split with Quartz Hill  (25-22, 13-25) and lost to Westlake (25-17, 25-22) in pool play matches. The Royals were knocked out by Arroyo Grande (16-25, 25-14, 15-8) in the first round of the Gold Bracket playoffs.

Clay Nerdin led the Royals with 40 kills in 11 sets.

The all-tournament team:

MVP — Mason Briggs, Alemany

All Tournament 

Nathan Merren, Quartz Hill
Daniel Willett, DP
Curren Malhotra, DP
Nick Pock,  Arroyo Grande
Akhil Tangutur, Palisades Charter
Miles Partain, Palisades Charter
Ryan Horan, Alemany 
Steven Weese, Alemany

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