by Kaitlyn Orozco~The Conqueror Reporter
On October 24, 2017 the Girls Varsity Volleyball team won their sixth consecutive league championship with a 3-0 victory over Diamond Ranch. Dozens of fans filled the bleachers to witness the match and support the seniors on their Senior Night. The Lady Conquerors finished the league season at 8-2, with an overall record of 16-9.
The athletes struggled to find their rhythm at first, since there were so many new underclassmen. But by the end of the season, the team portrayed themselves as a force to be reckoned with. “We had some ups and downs, but we were mature enough to put it aside,” stated Outside Hitter Danielle Curiel, “It was a whole new team and I’m really glad we were able to establish a bond, because last year we had a really strong connection. Since so many seniors left last year and since so many new players stepped up, we had to build up a new team.”
The championship game took place on Senior Night, where all the seniors were commemorated the for all of their dedication and hard work. Among them are Middle Blocker Ulani Wells, Libero Bailey Chavez, Outside Hitter Janderi Ceja, and Defensive Specialists Angelique Gonzalez and Alyssa Armstrong. Before the game started, the seniors were presented with flowers, balloons, and a brief description about themselves and their commitment to the team.
The ladies conquered Diamond Ranch in the first set of the match, with a final score of 25-20. Outside Hitter Jenica Hernandez was earning points for the girls by spiking the ball with a tremendous amount of force towards the corners. Chavez did a fantastic job at digging up balls, to prevent their opponent from earning points. The teams were neck and neck but it was the Conquerors who came out on top in the first game.
During the second game, the girls were falling behind on the scoreboard. After multiple timeouts, where the players were consulted by their coaches, the team played with an exuberant amount of energy. Hitters Jennifer Martinez, Jada Smith and Ulani Wells were making up for the lost points by spiking the ball towards the corners of the court. As the Conquerors gained points, the crowd got rowdy, and the players from Diamond Ranch became frustrated. Diamond Ranch cracked under the pressure and lost control of the ball that Chavez served, which sealed their fate in the second set. The Conquerors finished the second game with a 25-21 point win.
Assistant Varsity Coach Tim Flink commented, “The girls were incredible, the second set when they came back from such a huge deficit showed tremendous character, and they wanted it [a win].”
For the third set, the ladies amplified their intensity and came out hungry for a win. Sets from Sophomore Soledad Sibal and Junior Stephanie Ramos were perfectly positioned to be spiked by the hitters. Hitter Alexis Rodriguez flaunted her serving abilities, which contributed to the team’s overall success. Ultimately, it was Smith who finished the set with one final spike that could not be counteracted by their opponents. The Lady Conquerors dominated Diamond Ranch with a 25-16 point victory.
The team, as well as their coaches, took pride in their accomplishment of winning another league championship. “It feels awesome to be named league champs because there were so many people that doubted us in the beginning of our season,” stated Middle Blocker Sophia Hess.
For others, like Ramos, winning this game meant becoming part of a tradition. “It feels amazing to be part of a team that won their sixth league championship in a row. I have friends and family who have been part of this tradition and now I can say I am too,” stated Ramos.
The Lady Conquerors will be moving on to the first round of CIF, hopeful to keep their winning streak alive. The girls will host Alemany High School on Tuesday October 31, Halloween Night, at 7pm. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children and students with ASB.
If you’ve noticed our girls wearing lime green lately, it’s not an attempt at establishing a fashion trend. They are actually showing support for 2017 graduate Mireya Rojo, who was recently diagnosed with Lymphoma. Mireya and her sister Marisa were key members of league championship teams at Los Altos and now our girls are showing their support and love by trying to bring awareness and raise funds for Mireya. If you would like to help, please visit the link below to read Mireya’s story and donate.