Outside hitter Lia Kaufman reaches to hit a hard angle ball during the Oct. 14 game against Buckingham Charter, as sophomore Tori Van Vleck, junior Katia Dahmani and junior Annya Dahmani cover her.

Jacqueline Chao
Outside hitter Lia Kaufman reaches to hit a hard angle ball during the Oct. 14 game against Buckingham Charter, as sophomore Tori Van Vleck, junior Katia Dahmani and junior Annya Dahmani cover her.

Tying with league rival Valley Christian Academy, varsity volleyball finished the season first in the league with a 11-1 record.

A coin toss was hosted by the league to determine who would receive a higher seed in the playoffs, and the Cavs won.

The Cavs still have some things to work on to prepare for the playoffs, especially after their 0-3 loss against Bradshaw Christian, a Div. V team, on Oct. 27.

But the scores show how much the girls have improved.

In their first match on Aug. 29, the Cavs lost to the Bradshaw Christian Pride, 13-25, 15-25, 17-25.

But in their Oct. 27 post-league match they came closer: 19-25, 21-25, 18-25.

The Cavs haven’t ever made it past semi-finals, but junior Yasmin Gupta said she believes this could be the year.

Yet their journey to becoming league champs had some bumps along the way.

And one of those was the injury of freshman outside hitter Bri Davies.

Davies, a starter, suffered a partial ligament tear (LCL), a bone contusion, and a knee injury in a Sept. 24 tournament, about two weeks into league play.

“But the team stepped up to cover her position and lift each other up,” Song said.

“I think you (need to) work with what you’ve got” Song said.

Davies said that she hopes to return by Nov. 16.

And making the best of situations seemed to be one of the girls’ strongest attributes this season.

“We could be losing to what seems like a point of no return, but then we (would) step up and make a comeback,” senior Kaeleigh Valverde said.

Whether it was coming back, 25-22, against Valley Christian at the end of a long four-set match on Sept. 16 or not letting their guard down when Sacramento Adventist Academy almost caught up during their final league game, the Cavs have battled fatigue to be the victors.

Last month, coach Jason Kreps said the girls needed to “gel together” since they were still new to working with each other.

Senior Isabelle Leavy passes a ball during the girls' match against Sacramento Adventist Academy on Oct. 25.

Kevin Huang
Senior Isabelle Leavy passes a ball during the girls’ match against Sacramento Adventist Academy on Oct. 25.

And since then, they’ve done just that.

They’ve become so comfortable that now they regularly switch between positions and lineups to fill in whichever places are needed or to ensure that all the girls get time on the court.

Song says that she has some concrete goals for the playoffs.

“My number-one goal is that the team starts fast, starts ready,” she said.

“I feel like in the season we’ve been starting out slow. I want to see some fire early on.”

Another goal is to improve defense.

“We’ve got to be crashing the middle on defense,” Song said.

“When the opponents put a ball straight up and our wings drop, someone’s got to be putting that ball up.

“They need to be alert, communicate and be ready to move – believe that they can make it to that ball.”

By Chardonnay Needler

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