The varsity volleyball team lost to Valley Christian on Oct. 21, 3-1. On Sept. 26, the Cavs also lost to Valley, 3-2.

Co-coach Jason Kreps was not at the game because he was on the sixth-grade week-long trip to the Redwoods. Instead, co-coach Sarah Song coached, along with JV coach Kristi Mathisen, who had just finished coaching the JV match.

In the first set, freshman Katia Dahmani began the serve, but the Lions quickly fired back with a fast deep hit. There were many of these fast hits from the Lions, but the Cavs managed to hold on to a small lead.

Toward the middle of the set, Valley Christian pushed ahead to a 7-point lead. It was looking bleak for the Cavs, but SCDS made a strong effort and got the score to 22-24.

Just as the match was going into sudden death, the Valley Christian coach called a timeout to the disappointment of the excited crowd. After the timeout, there was some intense play, but the breaking point was when one of SCDS’s front row players tipped the ball into Valley Christian’s side of the court and won the set for the Cavs, 26-24.

For the first half of the second set, SCDS had poor control over the ball and hit into the net a few times. They eventually regained their control, but lost, 16-25.

The third set was a little better for the Cavs, but they ended up losing, 18-25.

There was a real fight for the final match. The teams were neck and neck at the end, but SCDS slipped back a tiny bit and lost, 29-31.

A couple dozen of Valley Christian’s upperclassmen boys attended and cheered very loudly at every point the Lions won. However, Valley Christian’s players never acknowledged their classmates’ support and stayed focused.

The referees treated this match very seriously. During the first timeout in the first set, the referee called over Valley Christian’s two JV players who were officiating the match and sternly spoke to the girls about making calls more quickly.

Parents of the players are impressed by how much better their daughters’ skills have gotten.

“I’ve seen a lot of improvement in the players,” said Zina Dahmani, mother of freshmen Katia and Annya. “I love watching.”

During the match, parents and the Lions’ JV players sold pink T-shirts for $10, sweatshirts for $15 and candy. Guests could also buy raffle tickets for a chance to win gift cards, sweatshirts and bowling passes.

The team’s motto for the evening was “Dig for the Cure.” This was the first year that the Valley Christian team had a fundraiser for breast cancer.

Many volleyball teams have fundraisers supporting diseases that specifically affect women because volleyball is typically a female-oriented sport. Mathisen coaches the volleyball team at Rio Americano and recently raised $500 for breast cancer with her team.

High schoolers can volunteer to officiate varsity’s next match and will receive community-service hours for doing so. Mathisen and athletic director Matt Vargo encourage students to contact them for details.

The next match will be at home against Wilton Christian at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 22. Varsity previously played Wilton Christian and won, 3-0.

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