SBVC Roundup: 18-Blue finishes strong to stay in D1

The Santa Barbara Volleyball Club 18-Blue team finished 10th overall in division 1 of the Southern California Volleyball Association while the 17-Blue team won its pool and finished 3-1 on the day in division 3.

The 18-Blue team, having just moved up to division ,1 met with strong competition in pool play. The team opened up the morning taking Mizuno Long Beach 18-Rockstar to three sets before losing the match. It subsequently also lost the next two matches to Forza1 North 18-Asics and Laguna Beach 17s in two sets. The team bounced back from a 0-3 pool play record and won two playoff rounds, handily beating Long Beach 17-Rockstar (25-17, 25-14) and Golden West 18-Asics (25-14) to make it to the finals of the lower bracket where the team lost to Forza1 North 18-Asics (25-15).

“This was an exciting finish for the team. We gained a lot of experience by playing among the top teams in this tournament,” Coach K.C. Collins mentioned. “It was really a combined effort. Everyone worked hard and played well all day!”

The 17-Blue team started sluggish but managed to pick up the energy and win its pool by beating Rancho Valley 17-Premier, Mavericks 17-Black and Bakersfield 18-Judy.

“We really put it together against Bakersfield (beating them in 2), and played some of our best ball of the season,” remarked Coach David Haan.

With a chance to move up a division, the team entered in a back-and-forth playoff battle against Lava South 18s but lost in three sets (25-17, 17-25, 15-12) and stays in Division 3.

“They crushed us the first set, and we crushed them in the second set. We had the right match ups in the third set, but just could not put it together for the last few points. Heartbreaking loss but we will learn from this experience,” Haan said. “Chloe Allen was our standout player of the day. She hit a .309, and passed a 2.6. She is really starting to establish herself as one of the top players in the region for her age group. Lauren Suh also steadied our backcourt passing at 2.4 for the day, and averaging 4 digs a set.”

The teams will set off in a couple weeks to compete in the three-day SCVA Junior National Qualifier in Los Angeles.

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