Underdog 13th Seed SDCC among Round 2 Regional volleyball winners

No. 1-ranked Irvine Valley returning to state tournament as the only undefeated team left in the field.
No. 1-ranked Irvine Valley returning to state tournament as the only undefeated team left in the field.

State No. 1-rated Irvine Valley, MiraCosta, Canyons and surprising No. 13 seed San Diego City College have advanced with Southern California Regional Round 2 victories while Cabrillo, Feather River, San Joaquin Delta and second-year program Folsom Lake made it through the Northern California Regionals with wins Saturday night. The eight teams will participate in the CCCAA State Women's Volleyball Championships on Dec. 2-3 at Solano College.


#1 IRVINE VALLEY d. #8 GROSSMONT, 3-0 (25-21, 25-22, 25-19)
The state No. 1-ranked Lasers continued an undefeated season that has returned them to the CCCAA State Championships behind a sweep over the Griffins. Taira Ka'awaloa pounded 17 kills, hit .361 and had eight digs. Olivia Aguilar added 11 kills and six digs, Megan Ramseyer totaled 33 assists with three kills and two aces, and Gabi Lau totaled 12 digs. IVC, the Orange Empire Conference champs, picked up its 20th sweep and has lost just five sets all year. For Grossmont, the PCAC Co-South champs season ends despite Alexcis Morris scoring nine kills and five blocks.
Irvine Valley 24-0, Grossmont 21-7

#2 MIRACOSTA d. #10 LONG BEACH CITY, 3-0 (25-21, 25-23, 25-19)
The Spartans ran their winning streak to 19 straight by sweeping its second South Coast Conference champion team in a span of five days. PCAC North champion MiraCosta went 6-0 v. the SCC this year, all sweeps.  Hayley Huntsman handed out 31 assists with six kills and three aces. Reilly Bosworth, Halie Hess and Claire Kinder all recorded nine kills and Jazleigh Ortiz paced the defense with 23 of the team's impressive 72 digs overall. MC came right out of the gate hitting .438 in the first set to establish control.
MiraCosta 26-6, Long Beach City 18-5

#3 CANYONS d. #11 EL CAMINO, 3-0 (25-20, 26-24, 25-23) 
Back in September, the Warriors beat the Cougars in five sets. Since that match, COC did its homework and in this regional final rematch, swept the SCC Co-South champion El Camino to advance to the state final 8 tourney. COC, the Western State Conference Co-South champion, has relied on the powerful hitting of Emily Burns, who ripped 15 kills, and Caroline Page who had 13 kills to advance to the state tournament. For El Camino under first-year head coach Liz Hazell, Jeriphina Leilua had nine kills and Aiko Waters made six kills and 13 digs.
Canyons 24-5, El Camino 20-5

#13 SAN DIEGO CITY d. #5 PIERCE, 3-2 (19-25, 25-22, 23-25, 25-23, 16-14)
The Knights continued a magical run through the regionals to advance to the state tournament with another upset win, outlasting the Brahmas in five sets. The PCAC South Co-Champions rallied from 1-0 and 2-1 set deficits and by the finish the two teams were separated by only one point (Pierce 109, SDCC 108). For the Knights, Brielle McKinnon made 14 kills and 20 digs (hit .323) and Lysette Serna had her second straight regional double-double on 14 kills and 16 digs. Shatha Julima contributed 10 kills (.455, no errors) and three aces while Bree Reid passed out 47 assists. Going into the postseason, SDCC had won only two matches against state top 25 teams, but matched that with its playoff wins over Cypress and Pierce.
San Diego City 23-3, Pierce 23-8


#1 CABRILLO d. #8 DE ANZA, 3-0 (25-7, 25-15, 25-13)
The North top-seeded Seahawks treated this regional final like just another Coast Conference match, sweeping the Dons while limiting them to just 35 points. Cabrillo dominated behind the play of Kylie Kvam (10 kills, five blocks, .500 pct.) and Jolie Samuelson (nine kills, .409).  Mari Molina distributed 35 assists and served five aces. Alyssa Nelson also twirled five aces and had 10 digs. Cabrillo extended its winning streak to 17 matches and 18 of its wins this year have come against teams from the Coast. The Seahawks went 54-3 in sets v. Coast squads. Although the program's remarkable conference win streak has been limited to its own North Division matches, that streak was extended to a current state-best 95 straight during the regular season. The 2013 and 2015 state champs, Cabrillo has won its last 35 consecutive sets as it advances to yet another state tournament. De Anza, the Coast South Co-Champions, went 0-3 v. state tournament qualifiers this year.
Records: Cabrillo 29-1, De Anza 20-5.

#2 FEATHER RIVER d. #10 BUTTE, 3-0 (25-13, 25-11, 25-20)
For the third time this season, The Golden Eagles got to face their Golden Valley Conference nemesis the Roadrunners and GVC champ FRC for the third time sent them to defeat. This punched Feather River's ticket to the state tourney final eight as the team has won 13 of its last 14 matches. Cyan Blackdeer floored 12 kills and Madison Howard picked up her second double-double of the regionals on 10 kills and 11 digs (plus five blocks). Precious Helekahi dished out 31 assists. For Butte, Baylee Willis tallied five kills and three blocks while Kristina Joyce set 17 assists.
Feather River 26-5, Butte 21-9

#5 SAN JOAQUIN DELTA d. #4 FRESNO CITY, 3-2 (25-20, 19-25, 25-23, 17-25, 15-12)
The Mustangs are returning to the state championship tournament after an 8-year absence thanks to their 5-set triumph over the defending state champ Rams. Strong serving was the difference late in the match for Delta as Alanna Valdez had two aces and Mika Fithian served an ace for match point. Amilya Thompson had a monster match with 21 kills and 21 digs, and Avery Martin was up for the challenge on defense with 25 digs (50 in two regional wins). Annual Central Valley Conference champion Fresno had a 12-match win streak snapped as Delta was able to avenge a 4-set loss to the Rams earlier this year at the Delta Classic. For FCC, Makayla Cervantes totaled 15 kills, 22 digs and three aces and Shanea Laird scored 11 kills (hit .474).
SJ Delta 23-4, Fresno City 24-6

#6 FOLSOM LAKE d. #3 SIERRA, 3-1 (22-25, 25-17, 25-23, 25-20)
The Falcons rallied for the second straight playoff match and overcame the early 1-set deficit to defeat the Wolverines in four sets. In just its second season as a program, Folsom Lake is now headed to its first state tourney appearance. The Big 8 Conference was a 3-team race all season but ended with Sierra winning the title, San Joaquin Delta taking second and Folsom Lake placing third, but now only Sierra will not go on to state. Folsom Lake snapped first a 10-match win streak by Sierra and now a 12-match streak for the Wolverines. Kylie Haverson was again a force for the Falcons. For Sierra, Grace Lemmo pounded 17 kills while Kapri Pelle and Madison Mateer added 14 kills a piece.
Folsom Lake 24-4, Sierra 24-4


Recaps by Robert Lewis, CCCWVCA SID/CCCSIA