SH Prep girls win four volleyball matches at Spikefest I | News | Palo Alto Online |


SH Prep girls win four volleyball matches at Spikefest I


West Bay Athletic League volleyball teams Menlo School, Sacred Heart Prep and Notre Dame-Belmont, which were all involved in last year's Northern California playoffs, all finished among the top 11 at the 32-team Spikefest I at Milpitas and Independence high schools on Saturday.

The defending Division IV state champion Knights took seventh overall, finishing the tournament with a 3-2 record, falling only to defending Open state champion Mitty and Open state quarterfinalist Sacred Heart Cathedral.

Sacred Heart Prep won four of five matches and won the bronze division title, matching its ninth-place finish from last year.

Elsewhere, Woodside finished 16th overall while Gunn was the Green Division champion. Castilleja also played in the Green Division.

The Scots, led by former Menlo School coach Chris Crader, finished third overall at the Spikefest, beating Mitty in three sets along the way. Their lone loss was a 3-setter to Sacred Heart Cathedral. Carlmont, whose JV team won the JV event two years ago, swept St. Francis to claim third.

St. Ignatius, coached by former Paly coach David Huan, won the tournament, beating the Irish in the final, 26-24, 25-16.

Menlo (3-2) opened with a 25-21, 25-18 victory over Lincoln-San Francisco and then downed San Benito, 25-11, 25-17 before losing to SHC, 25-18, 25-20.

The Gators (5-1) won two of three during pool play, downing Milpias, 25-21, 25-18 and beating West Bay Athletic League rival Harker, 19-25, 25-15, 15-12 but losing to Carlmont, 25-19, 25-17.

Gunn lost to San Benito and Lincoln before coming back to beat Lynbrook, 25-12, 25-17.

Woodside beat Los Alto, 25-17, 18-25, 25-7, in its first contest and then fell to Valley Christian, 25-17, 26-24 and in three sets to Notre Dame-Belmont. Castilleja opened pool play losing to Valley Christian, Los Altos and Independence.

In the silver championship division, Menlo dropped a 3-setter to Mitty, 23-25, 25-17, 15-6 and came back to beat Presentation, 25-23, 25-19.

Menlo junior outside hitter Grace King collected 11 kills and nine digs while senior setter Kristin Sellers had 25 assists in the win over Presentation.

King collected 35 kills and five aces in the five games. Sellers distributed 102 assists for the tournament and had eight digs against San Benito. Senior opposite Ashley Dreyer finished with 27 kills, hitting .600 (6 of 10 attempts) against both San Benito and Presentation.

"I think that we had a really good showing at Spikefest, especially considering that this was our first real competition," Sellers said. "We struggled a bit with serving and serve receive, but I thought our blocking and hitting were very effective, and I’m glad that we were able to perform so well this early in the season. I’m super proud of how hard everyone is working."

Menlo junior Riley Holland totaled 49 digs, including 17 against Mitty, while fellow junior Sianna Houghton had 36 digs, 24 kills, including nine against Mitty. Houghton also served six aces for the tournament.

Menlo started with a 25-21, 25-18 win over Lincoln-S.F and a 25-11, 25-17 win over San Benito. King tallied 19 kills while Sellers had 42 assists and Holland 17 digs in both matches combined.

Menlo sophomores Abby Holleran (five digs against Lincoln) and Emma Holland (pair of aces against Mitty) pitched in as well.

In the bronze championship division. Sacred Heart Prep needed three sets to get past San Benito, 17-25, 25-21, 15-12, and Clovis West, 25-19, 22-25, 15-12.

Senior outside hitter Cate Desler averaged 10.8 kills and 2.4 aces per set for totals of 54 kills and 12 aces. Ally Polverari added 32 kills and 12 aces.

Katie Quinlan (65 assists) and Haley Martella (39) shared setting duties while Eliza Foley (10 digs, 9 aces) and Caroline Caruso (17 digs) took care of the defense.

Menlo travels to Gunn (3-3) for a 6:45 p.m. contest Tuesday. Sacred Heart Prep is at home against Carlmont at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday. Woodside (3-3) hosts Sequoia at 6:15 p.m. Monday. Castilleja travels to Soquel for a match Tuesday at 5:30 p.m.

In a nonleague match played Friday, Palo Alto fell to host Valley Christian, 25-15, 22-25, 26-24, 25-19.

Senior Chelsea Fan led the Vikings with 11 kills while junior Siena Brewster added 10. Sophomore Amelia Gibbs added nine kills, recorded two blocks and served two aces.

Seven different Vikings recorded four digs, including Brewster, Fan and Gibbs.

Palo Alto travels to Sequoia for a nonleague match on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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