Volleyball playoffs: Previews of Saturday's finals
The CIF-SS boys volleyball championship games will be played Saturday at Cerritos College.
BOYS VOLLEYBALL FINALS
Where/when: at Cerritos College, Saturday
Fan info: Tickets, $12 general admission and students without high school ID; $5 students with high school ID; parking $5.
Corona del Mar (28-5) vs. Loyola of Los Angeles (28-2), 7:30 p.m.
Outlook: The teams met April 16 in a nonleague match, with Loyola winning in four sets, 25-22, 25-21, 23-25, 25-22. As CdM coach Steve Conti said following Wednesday’s semifinal victory over Mira Costa, his team has matured a lot since that match. One key has been getting senior setter Matt Ctvrtlik up to speed following an ankle injury. CdM’s offense is as balanced as any, and the output from the semifinals is an example. CdM had five players with at least five kills and 19 from the middle combination of Will Hunter and Mitch Haly. The Sea Kings lost in last year’s final. The second-seeded Cubs have already defeated Edison, San Clemente and Beckman on their road to the final. Loyola was runner-up in 2013 and 2014, losing both times to Huntington Beach. Their roster is made of juniors and seniors with the experience of those losses. Davis Boehle (setter), Casey McGarry (setter) and Jack Truman (middle blocker) are all headed to UC Santa Barbara, Ian Parrish (middle blocker) is going to UCLA and Adam Lee (outside hitter) to New York University.
Saddleback Valley Christian (34-3) vs. Crean Lutheran (26-2), 9 a.m.
Outlook: The Warriors’ three losses have come to Huntington Beach in the season opener and twice to Oak Park in the finals of the Dos Pueblos Invitational and the Redondo Varsity Classic. They lost a set to Capistrano Valley (Foothill Invitational), beat Beckman in five sets and Santa Margarita in four. This has been a season of firsts for the Saints, thanks to a strong group of seniors (Andy McFarlane, Riley Evans, Nick Ellwein, Isaac Blair and Nate Browne). Crean Lutheran recorded its first Academy League title and are now in its first CIF final. The Saints lost their second match of the year (March 3) and in the final of the Division 2 championships of the Orange County Championships. Aside from those two matches, Crean Lutheran has lost just four sets, two coming in a five-set victory over Rio Mesa in the quarterfinals.
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