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Girls volleyball preview: Top 10 O.C. teams to start the season

STAFF WRITER

OCVarsity girls volleyball preview for 2015:

O.C. TOP 10

1. Santa Margarita: The Eagles return a strong nucleus, and they’ve already experienced success, winning the prestigious Ann Kang Invitational in Hawaii last month.

2. Mater Dei: The Monarchs will have a different look after five starters last season graduated. What is left is a solid and consistent group that will be fun to watch.

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GIRLS VOLLEYBALL PREVIEW

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3. Huntington Beach: The Oilers had one senior on last year’s team that captured the Sunset League title. This year, an experienced group, led by Cami Sanchez, should have the Oilers poised for a big season.

4. Aliso Niguel: The Wolverines began and finished last season as the county’s top-ranked team, and captured their first CIF-SS title. This year’s group will be led by senior Kathryn Plummer.

5. Corona del Mar: With Jessie Harris, Natalia Bruening and Payton Carter returning, the Sea Kings figure to be in the mix as one of the top teams in the county. They advanced to the Division 1AA semifinals last year.

6. San Clemente: Last year saw the Tritons bow out of the playoffs in the second round. With key returners Cali Hoye, Cassie Stewart and Marie Paris back, the Tritons have the look of a team that will be a factor this season.

7. Los Alamitos: The Griffins were in contention for the Sunset League title last season and advanced to the second round of the CIF playoffs. Senior setter Julia Patterson should help the Griffins be one of the better teams in the county.

8. Villa Park: The Spartans won the Crestview League title and advanced the Division 1A semifinals a year ago. They graduated some key components, but have a solid core returning, including Emma Calle and Emily Elder.

9. Esperanza: The Aztecs finished ninth in the county last season and advanced to the Division 2AA semifinals. Coach Isaac Owens believes this group has a shot to take the next step in the playoffs.

10. Edison: The Chargers are another team that figures to be in the mix in the Sunset League chase. They have a pair of first-team all-league players returning in Dani Dennison and Hannah Phair.

Contact the writer: dcalhoun@ocregister.com


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