This is a challenging week for Santa Barbara High’s girls volleyball team.

The Dons started Monday with a home match against a potent Harvard Westlake team and lost in three sets, 25-14, 25-10, 25-16.  Harvard Westlake is listed on the CIF-Southern Section Division 1-2 Watch List. 

“A tough loss to a very dynamic and fast-pace offensive team,” said first-year Santa Barbara coach Ariana Garner. “We had our moments.”

She cited the play of libero Taylor Robertson, middle Georgia Brace and outside hitter Chloe Mauceri.

The Dons’ difficult week continues with a match at Valencia on Wednesday and the Santa Barbara Tournament of Champions on Friday and Saturday. They open the tournament against top-seeded Torrey Pines.

Garner said the team is focused on improving in each match. 

“As we move toward preparing for the TOC this weekend, we are focusing on serving tough and trying to get teams out of system, and playing to our strengths as a smaller-size team,” she explained. 

“Our first win as a team is coming,” she added. “The girls need to continue to be patient and keep buying into the system that coach Ben (Hunt) and I are trying to implement.”

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

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Barry Punzal, Sports Editor

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