CdM regroups, sweeps Damien in Div. II regional


NEWPORT BEACH – The challenge facing the Corona del Mar boys volleyball team was finding a way to bounce back from Saturday’s hard-fought, emotionally draining loss in the CIF-SS finals.

Just a couple of days after that five-set loss to Huntington Beach in the Division 1 final, the Sea Kings were back on the court in the first round of the CIF Southern California Regionals on Tuesday night.

CdM did enough to get through the opener, sweeping Damien of La Verne, 25-17, 25-15, 25-28, in a Division II match.

“I knew energy-wise that it was going to be hard for us,” CdM coach Steve Conti said. “Just because we put so much physically and emotionally into Saturday night’s match.

“I mentally kind of prepared myself for the type of energy that we were going to play with.”

CdM (30-5) didn’t practice Monday.

“It probably wouldn’t done any good,” Conti said. “Just from our experience last year when we lost in the (CIF) semifinals, we won (in the first round of regional), but we kind of played the same way. Hopefully just getting back out there will help us be a little bit better when we step back out on the court.”

Sam Kobrine led the way for the Sea Kings with eight kills. Ryan Moss added seven. Kevin Fults and Finn Jeffrey had six apiece. Matt Ctvrtlik had 27 assists.

The Sea Kings will be home for the regional semifinal on Thursday night against Clovis North.

“Just like in the CIF tournament, this regional tournament, the competition is going to get better each round,” Conti said. “So we’re going to see a better opponent in the next round, so hopefully we will have a better day of practice (today) and be a little bit more mentally prepared to play.”

The regional final for Division II is Saturday at Cerritos College at 5 p.m.

In Division I

Huntington Beach 3, Palisades 0: Eric Beatty led the host Oilers with nine kills in a 25-12, 25-22, 25-13 home victory.

TJ DeFalco, Shane Holdaway and Josh Tuaniga all had six kills apiece for the Oilers (38-0), who have won consecutive regional titles.

The Oilers will host Buchanan in the second round, Thursday.

In Division III

Laguna Beach 3, Rancho Dominguez 0: Pete Obradovich and Ben Jones had nine kills apiece as the second-seeded Breakers swept their first-round match, 25-17, 25-11, 25-16.

Josh McManus added eight kills for Laguna Beach, who will host Parker of San Diego in the second round.

In the top half of the bracket, both top-seeded Saddleback Valley Christian and St. Margaret's swept their matches and will meet in the second round Thursday.

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