Bishop battles back to take Carp in five

The Carpinteria women’s volleyball team came out firing but were iced after two sets, losing to rival Bishop Diego 10-25, 23-25, 25-15, 25-9, 15-11 at home Thursday night.

“High school volleyball is very emotional, very bipolar,” Warrior head coach Katie Dolge said. “One moment we’re doing great, but after a few mistakes, we just broke down.”

Carpinteria took control control in the first two sets on a series of high-flying kills, diving digs, and a flurry of errors on Bishop Diego’s end. The Cardinals spent most of the first two sets recovering from poorly-executed digs, and had a hard time achieving a playable ball.

Following a duo of sluggish sets, the Cardinals revamped their defensive approach and came back with seven unanswered points to start the third game.

The Warriors lacked illusiveness in the third by favoring the left side of the net, leading to multiple stuff blocks and easy digs for Bishop Diego defenders.

After a dominating third set, the Cardinals didn’t turn back.

Bishop Diego instantly took over the fourth set with 14 straight unanswered points.

Cardinal Selena Schmidt led the offensive front with 12 kills throughout the match.

Cardinal coach Joe Reiken commended his middle blocker Janelle Kohler, who provided a little bit of everything – including the emotional boost the team needed to win.

“It’s easy to say Janelle had the best game of her life tonight,”  Bishop Diego coach Joe Reiken said. “To take a two-set loss, and turn it around, she couldn’t have chosen a better time to peak.”

Carpinteria's bench reacts to an ace from the Warriors

Carpinteria's bench reacts to an ace from the Warriors

Nicole Tetherow also had a solid match for the Cardinals, tallying 35 digs.

After the game, some of the Carpinteria girls shed tears because this would be the last time they would face their conference rival.

“I’ll always miss the competitiveness between us; It’s been fun,” Warrior captain Kelci Jones said.

The loss for Carpinteria also means that the team, which is now in the Tri-Valley League will most likely be moved into the less-competitive Frontier League in the Tri-County Athletic Association next season.

“As a coach it’s disappointing because we want to play the toughest teams,” Katie said.

Every two years, the bottom two teams from the Tri-Valley League are moved to the Frontier, and the top two teams from the Frontier are assigned to the Tri-Valley League.

Dolge, however, does think that the move could lead to more wins next season.

Carpinteria head coach Katie Dolge gives senior Megan McMahon a hug prior to Thursday's match

Carpinteria head coach Katie Dolge gives senior Megan McMahon a hug prior to Thursday's match

“It’s hard coming out every game and trying our best, but losing to teams that are just better than us,” Dolge said.

Thursday night’s rivalry match was also senior night. Senior players on both teams were introduced before the game, and were handed bouquets of flowers to give to their parents.

Bishop Diego will travel to Ventura on Tuesday to take on St. Bonaventure. Carpinteria will face Malibu at home on Wednesday.