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SBVC Roundup: 13, 14 Blue Teams Take First in Pools at Mandatory Tourney

The Santa Barbara Volleyball Club's 12’s, 13’s and 14’s teams played in their first Southern California Volleyball Association regular season mandatory event of the year.

The 12 Blue team started off the day with 2 close losses to SG Elite 11-Roshambo (14-25, 26-28) and OCVBC 12-Blue (25-12, 24-26, 13-15). They rebounded with a solid win over Bakersfield Club Jamba 12-Kenadi (25-23, 25-11); and in a competitive pool, their 1-2 record was enough to put them on top of a 3-way tie for 2nd. Coach Tina Brown said that, “Caroline Mikkelson had a breakout weekend, along with Emma Zuffelato.  Emma stepped in as a setter and ran a very solid, smooth offense.  Also providing a big impact offensively was Katarina Erickson, who stepped up big time from the service line. We (coaches) are excited to be part of this great team as they continue to work hard and improve every day!”

The 13 Blue team tied for 1st place in their first SCVA mandatory tournament with a 2-1 record.  The team opened the day with a narrow loss to Bakersfield 13 Colleen (25-23, 18-25, 16-18) before posting a win against Club West 13 National (26-24, 25-19). Coach Ed Gover praised the “great serving of Tiffany Medel and excellent hitting/ball control by Elise Guerrand-Hermes and Anabelle Tiller.” He also highlighted the trio of middle hitters, Maddie Oriskovich, Taylor Wilson, and Summer Nestlerode for their great play at the net.   In the final match of the day, the 13 Blue team came back from a 0-7 start to win back to back sets against Seal Beach 13 Marcelo (25-12, 25-19) to earn the tie for first place.  

The 13 White team battled this weekend, posting a 1-2 record to finish 3rd in their pool. They opened up the day with a win over Seal Beal 13-Stacy (25-20, 25-16), before dropping matches to Prime 13-Molten (22-25, 11-25) and Rise VTA VBC 13 Blue (25-27, 11-25). Coach Andrew Grimes said, “Passing was the biggest key of the day and when it broke down, it became tough to score points. However, the efforts of Lily Singhass set the standard for the day on defense, while the offense was led by Kaiya Peters and Ellie Largura.”

The 14 Blue team traveled to the San Diego area to compete in their first mandatory tournament. The team had a solid day, going 3-0 in pool play to take 1st place. Not dropping a set, the 14 Blue team beat A4 Volley 14 Purple (25-21, 25-22), New Wave 14 Platinum (25-14, 25-11), and OCVC 14-1 (25-14, 25-21). This put the team in the playoffs with a chance to move up a division. With a tough match up versus Baja VBC 14-1, the team lost 23-25, 18-25 to stay in Division 2. Coach Jon Newton said of his team’s efforts: “The girls played extremely well all day executing game plans and using the skills that we had been working on in practice. Stand out players were Brynn Sofro, who was unstoppable offensively and a force at the net blocking; and Grace Matthews, who also played very well passing and staying aggressive offensively.”

The 14 White team, also competing in the San Diego area, battled their way to a 1-2 record to earn them a 3rd place finish in their pool. Coach Steven Crossland had nothing but praise for his team. “This weekend we definitely stepped into the competitive big leagues.  Despite losing our first two matches (to Rancho Valley 14-Select: 18-25, 15-25 and SG Elite 14-Thunder: 20-25, 20-25) against high level competition, I was thrilled to see the girls compete and raise their intensity levels.  We saw some very good serving and offensive teams which forced some team adjustments.  The team was led by setter Samantha Crossland and opposite Macy Christal, who was on fire both offensively and defensively.” In the last match of the day, after dropping game one (17-25), the team rallied to smash OCVBC 14-Blue in game two (25-13), thus setting up a deciding third game. During that game, “Macy Christal continued her dominant day by making an incredible dig, allowing us to transition into our offense and sparked our epic rally and eventual victory at 18-16. When the ball hit the ground for the winning point, the team and parents exploded with energy. It was one of those days that reminds me why I coach. I was incredibly proud of their effort. “

This weekend will see the 16's and 15's teams travel to San Diego and Los Angeles to compete in their first Mandatory event of the season, while the 18 Blue team will compete in the 3-day SoCal Junior National Qualifier in Anaheim.

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