Volleyball falls one win short of title

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Volleyball falls one win short of title

(GEORGE HUGHES/EYE OF THE TIGER)

(GEORGE HUGHES/EYE OF THE TIGER)

(GEORGE HUGHES/EYE OF THE TIGER)

(GEORGE HUGHES/EYE OF THE TIGER)

MARINA EFSTATHIU

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The boys volleyball team lost to the Granite Bay Grizzlies 3-2 in the championship match of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I playoffs last Thursday, falling one win short of the section banner.

The Tigers began the postseason with a first-round bye due to their first seed position in the Division I bracket.

In the second round, they went up against the Burbank Titans, the number 9 seed. The Tigers swept the Titans 3-0 with set scores of 25-14, 25-13, and 25-10.

In the third round, the Tigers faced the Oak Ridge Trojans. They defeated the number 4 seed with a match score of 3-1 and sets scores of 25-18, 17-25, 25-13, and 25-20.

In the championship match, the Tigers came out slow and lost the first two sets against the Grizzlies without ever having a lead over their opponents.

The Grizzlies won the first set 25-16 and the second set 25-18. The Tigers bounced back in the third set and managed to beat the Grizzlies 25-22 which kept them in contention for the championship.

The Tigers started the fourth set strong and went ahead 5-0 but the Grizzlies eventually caught up and tied the score at 10-10. After a neck-and-neck battle, the Tigers came out on top and won the fourth set 29-27, tying the match 2-2 in sets.

The Grizzlies stopped the Tigers’ chance at a comeback victory by beating them 15-12 in the fifth and final set, earning them the championship title.

Despite the loss in the championship game, the Tigers still hold a dominant 34-5 season record and will progress to the California Interscholastic Federation NorCal tournament, which is the next step on their goal to a state championship.

Even though the Tigers were not able to pull off the win against the Grizzlies, they feel confident in their abilities as they head into their first NorCal game tomorrow.

According to junior captain Neal Reilly, the boys just need to start their games strong and use their momentum to win.

“We need to focus on not starting slow and that’s it because that is what has been hurting us all year and what hurt us last night,” Reilly said. “We can’t start slow, we have to come out of the gate strong.”