Dom­i­nance at the net an­chors Lathrop’s 3rd straight vic­tory

Ripon Bulletin - - Sports - By DAVE CAMP­BELL

Lathrop dom­i­nated the net Wed­nes­day night with 35 kills to just six for host Sierra in a 25-18, 25-15, 15-15 sweep in Val­ley Oak League vol­ley­ball ac­tion. It’s the third straight win for the Spar­tans (2-0 VOL, 3-3 over­all), while Sierra fell to 0-2 in league (7-3 over­all) af­ter tak­ing de­fend­ing cham­pion Oak­dale to a fifth set in its opener Mon­day.

“We had a lot of power tonight,” Lathrop coach Heather An­der­son said. “That is the one thing I love about this team is when one girl is strug­gling we have two or three oth­ers step up. We are a lot deeper than we have been in the past and I think we kind of have this un­der­dog men­tal­ity — we are al­ways try­ing to prove some­thing. We al­ways take the un­der­dog ap­proach.

“I think we were well pre­pared for league be­cause we played tough teams in our non-league games. We had some teams that re­ally worked us over and that got us ready for the VOL.”

The Spar­tans were def­i­nitely ready to bat­tle at the net and were led by Jashiti Fa’alii’s nine kills, eight digs, two blocks and an ace.

“Life in the net is re­ally good,” Fa’alii said. “But it

can be tir­ing. But the hard work is def­i­nitely worth it.”

Ju­lianna Den­ning also had nine kills and two blocks with three of her kills com­ing in a 7-2 run in the first set that saw the Lathrop’s lead jump from 8-6 to 15-8. The Spar­tans would not trail again un­til the third set and then the Tim­ber­wolves led 3-1 only for Lathrop to go on a 6-2 spurt and not trail again.

“It was a team ef­fort,” Den­ning said. “We all worked to­gether and we com­mu­ni­cated a lot more than we did in our last game against East Union.”

Ka­rina Chavez had 23 as­sists for Lathrop. Avleen Kaur added seven kills, Mary Cot­ton had five kills, Krys­tal Tem­pra had five digs and three aces and Jor­dan Cor­ner added three kills.

“Ev­ery­body stepped it up to­day,” Kaur said. “We played our best.

“Sierra is not a bad team and we picked it up.”

Hai­ley Steele had three kills for Sierra and Emma Bri­erly had three aces and six as­sists.

Sopho­more Sierra 2, Lathrop 1 Re­nee Hamilton had seven aces and Ashlee Mat­teroli four for the Tim­ber­wolves in their 25-16, 20-25, 15-11 win.

The Spar­tans were led by Khyia Thorn­ton with seven kills. Hai­ley Hunter added seven aces, Jen­nifer San­til­lan had six as­sists and Char­lene Ber­nal had four blocks.

Fresh­man Sierra 2, Lathop 0 The Tim­ber­wolves eked out a 25-23, 25-20 win.

Genevieve Gaines had four aces for Sierra with some great set­ting. Jenna Vil­lanueva stepped it up in a new po­si­tion with three great saves and Kylie Machado had two kills.

De­siree Am­bat­ali had seven con­sec­u­tive aces for the Spar­tans. Crispa Balles­teros added four straight ser­vice points with five as­sists and three kills and Ke’mya Bar­nett tal­lied four kills.

HIME ROMERO/The Bul­letin

TOP COR­NER PHOTO: Jor­dan Cor­ner (14) and Ju­liana Den­ning (10) set up their block for Lathrop as Sierra’s Kylie Mat­teroli de­liv­ers the spike. ABOVE PHOTO: Krys­tal Tem­pra (7) cel­e­brates a point with her Lathrop team­mates in the third game of the...

HIME ROMERO/ The Bul­letin

Sierra head coach Trin­ity John­son gives in­struc­tions to play­ers on the bench dur­ing the third set.

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