Girls’ volleyball falters against Westridge in season opener

Written by Sofie Dreskin
Staff Writer 

Photos by Thomas Forman
Photo Editor 

Girls’ volleyball was defeated by Westridge in its first preseason game on Tuesday, August 22, with set scores of 25-18, 25-12, and 25-13. The Tigers fell to Westridge in a CIF match up as well as in a preseason showdown last season. South Pas established early leads in all of the sets but was unable to maintain offensive consistency throughout the whole game.

Westridge began the first set with an ace, but South Pas freshman Lola Foord evened the score with a powerful kill shortly after. South Pas set an early lead at 5-3 with another kill from Foord. A lack of aggressive offense from the Tigers led the game to a tied score of 5-5. They gained a two-point lead with strong defensive efforts from senior Maddie Saito, as South Pas took a four-point lead. Westridge fought back with a dominant serving streak and caught up to the Tigers at a score of 13-12. South Pas’s errors and lack of communication allowed Westridge to establish a seven-point lead at 24-17, with the game ending with a final score of 25-18.

The second set began with powerful kills from Westridge, resulting in a three-point lead. Saito brought South Pas back into the game with her serves and the gap was closed alongside strong defense from freshman Lindsay Hirano. Strategic plays at the net by senior Sophia Benzoni and Foord extended South Pas’s lead to 7-3. Consecutive kills from Westridge coupled with a lack of aggressiveness on offense from the Tigers closed the gap, tying the game at 8-8. Westridge continued with consistent serving and aggressive offense, bringing the score to 17-11. South Pas fought back for another point but Westridge ultimately took the game with a final score of 25-12.

South Pas took an early two-point lead at the start of the first set after a missed serve from Westridge. The game was quickly tied up with Westridge reaching a score of 2-2. Neither team made significant headway, but South Pas passers, Hirano and senior Viviana Maradiaga were able to hold off strong hits from Westridge, with the score rising to 9-9. A string of kills from Westridge put it in the lead at 14-10. South Pas slowly gained its ground, but it was too late, with the game ending at score of 25-13.

“We showed some good effort today, but we were unable to close a game. I am very encouraged that we hung in there against one of the best teams in the country,” Saito said. “We will get them next time!”

This game leaves the Tigers with an overall record of 0-1. They will play Mark Keppel next Thursday at home at 3:30 p.m.

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