PREP VOLLEYBALL: Nevada Union, Bear River, Forest Lake Christian find out postseason paths
The Sac-Joaquin Section released its girls volleyball playoff brackets Friday, and Nevada Union, Bear River and Forest Lake Christian are all bound for the postseason.
The Lady Miners are returning to the playoffs for a second straight season after finishing in fifth place in the Sierra Foothill League. Nevada Union (14-24, 4-8 SFL) got the No. 9 seed in the Division II bracket and will face No. 8 seed St. Mary’s (Stockton) on the road Tuesday.
St. Mary’s earned the No. 8 seed after an 18-15 season and a second-place finish in the Tri-City Athletic League.
The Lady Miners are a senior led team and that experience will bode well for them, said NU head coach Chrys Dudek.
“Last year was a good eye opener for us,” Dudek said about last season’s playoff experience. “I think we are more prepared this season. They are more mentally ready to play at that level.”
Leading NU this season has been seniors Celeste Picone, Hannah Voboril, Alex Cook and Kelsey Arvidson as well as juniors Regan Heppe and Greta Kramer.
Last season, the Lady Miners were the No. 14 seed and were bounced by Bella Vista in the first round of the D-II playoffs.
For the Bear River Lady Bruins, they landed the No. 5 seed in the D-IV bracket and will host No. 12 seed Dixon in the first round Tuesday.
Dixon went 14-14 this season and finished third in the Golden Empire League.
Bear River finished the season 20-19 overall and 8-2 in Pioneer Valley league, finishing second behind Placer.
The Lady Bruins are a regular in the postseason and have reached the semifinals in two of the last three seasons. The last time Bear River won a Sac-Joaquin Section title was 2012.
The Lady Bruins are led by a talented group of seniors in Ashley Albee, Alex Staples, Coral McLaughlin and Grace Sypnicki. Juniors Karinne McDonald, Kylee Dresbach-Hill and Mallory Rath along with sophomores Callie Bickmore and Caitlin McLaughlin are also strong players for Bear River.
“We feel like we are just now hitting our stride and playing our best volleyball,” said Bear River head coach Matt MacDonald. “We’ve been able to serve and play defense, and now we are really hitting the ball.”
The Forest Lake Christian Lady Falcons are back in the playoffs once again, earning the No. 3 seed in the D-VI bracket. The Lady Falcons will face No. 6 seed Valley Christian Thursday.
Valley Christian went 15-2 this season and tied for first place in the Sacramento Metropolitan League.
This is the second year FLC has made the playoffs under head coach Kyler Malarae, who took over last season.
The Lady Falcons finished the season 14-6 overall and took second in the Central Valley California League with an 8-2 record.
Forest Lake Christian has been led by seniors Alysse Moore, Emily O’Niell, Aileen Mackovey and Courtney John. Freshmen Faith Menary has also been an impact player for the Lady Falcons.
“A championship is our expectation and we’re not going to settle for anything less than that,” Malarae said earlier this seson.
For a complete look at all the Sac-Joaquin Section girls volleyball brackets visit http://www.cifsjs.org/sports/wvball/playoffs.
To contact Sports Editor Walter Ford, call 530-477-4232 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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With a balanced offensive attack and a strong defensive effort, the Nevada Union football team went on the road Friday night and knocked off Napa, 33-14.