Bishop Diego's Austin Carty (2) and Nick Malesky combine to block Sanger's Keith Moua during the playoffs of the Cardinal Classic. Credit: Gary Kim / Noozhawk photo

Bishop Diego’s boys volleyball finished tied for fifth place in its fourth annual Cardinal Classic on Saturday at the school’s two gyms.

Sanger High, one of the top teams in the CIF-Central Section, captured the championship, beating Crossroads of Santa Monica in a one-game  25-point final.

The Cardinal Classic drew 11 teams. Among the entries was Notre Dame-Sherman Oaks, which is coached by Carson Clark, a former U.S. National Team standout, two-time NCAA champion, four-time All-American and Santa Ynez High alum.

“We were excited to welcome Carson Clark and his Notre Dame team to the event in his first year, and we hope he continues to do great things with his program,” said Bishop Diego coach and tournament director Dillan Bennett.

Competitively, Sanger and Notre Dame were in a class of their own. Crossroads was another high-level team, currently ranked No. 2 in Division 4 of the Southern Section, and they provided stiff competition to the teams they competed against.”

Notre Dame tied for third place with Santa Monica’s Pacifica Christian.

Liam Flood of Bishop Diego hits against Sanger blockers Cody Coles (8) and Seth Dillon. Credit: Gary Kim / Noozhawk photo

Bishop, which lost to Sanger in the first-round of the championship bracket playoffs, tied with Crespi for fifth place. In pool play, the Cardinals beat Rio Mesa in pool play and lost against Crossroads.

“After a rough first set, we competed for the rest of the way,” said Bennett of the Crossroads match. “We’re still growing as a group, and I’m hopeful the adversity we’re encountering early in the season strengthens the team through tough losses.

“Nobody wants to have an unchallenged team heading into the playoffs, and this group has had its share of challenges so far. I think we’ll be better from this experience and, hopefully, we can take this growth into our matches this week at Cate and Foothill Tech before hitting the road to Santa Cruz for the Surf City Invitational.”

Braylon Katers, an all-tournament selection, led the Cardinals on the day with 21 kills and 24 digs. Nick Malesky and John Michael Flint each had 11 kills and Canaan Ramirez picked up 20 digs.

Santa Ynez won the tournament consolation title with a win over Oxnard.

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Barry Punzal, Noozhawk Sports Editor

— Noozhawk sports editor Barry Punzal can be reached at Follow Noozhawk Sports on Twitter: @NoozhawkSports. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.