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Sunset-Trinity Showcase a big addition to schedule

STAFF WRITER

For Orange Lutheran coach Andrew Mabry, the idea was too good to ignore.

The top teams from the Sunset League facing the best of the Trinity League in a one-day event?

“The idea had been around in the past, but nobody ever pulled the trigger on it,” he said.

That changes this season.

Several of the top volleyball teams in the county will gather Wednesday for the first Trinity vs. Sunset League Showcase, which will be held at Orange Lutheran and Huntington Beach.

At Orange Lutheran, top-ranked and defending CIF-SS champion Mater Dei faces No. 6 Los Alamitos at 5 p.m., followed by No. 4 Edison against No. 5 Orange Lutheran.

At Huntington Beach, JSerra takes on Newport Harbor at 5 p.m., with No. 2 Santa Margarita taking on No. 3 Huntington Beach at 7 p.m.

That’s six of the teams in the county’s preseason top 10, an impressive way to open the new season.

The Santa Margarita-Huntington Beach contest is a rematch of last year’s CIF-SS Division 1AA quarterfinals, which the Oilers won in four sets.

“My pitch to the coaches was that hopefully you can get the playoff atmosphere in early September that no one gets until league,” Mabry said. “I don’t think anyone would argue these are the top two leagues in county.

“This will be a really good way to showcase some really good volleyball, and it could serve as a nice little precursor to Dave Mohs (Championships). Hopefully, it will become a cool tradition that we can build on a little bit, maybe it is something we can do at one site in the future.”

The challenge facing this year’s event was finding an open date for each team. It couldn’t work on a Saturday, with tournaments, such as Dave Mohs (Sept. 9-10) and the Durango Fall Classic (Sept. 16-17), already on the schedule for most of teams.

“I think it is cool,” Los Alamitos coach Dave Huber said of the inaugural tournament. “It kind of has that college hoops feel, and I think it will be kind of fun to match teams up and see where you stand. It should be fun to let the two leagues battle it out.”

KIPP GAINING EXPERIENCE

Corona del Mar sophomore Kendall Kipp will miss the first couple of matches of the season because she is competing with the U.S. Girls Youth National Team.

The U.S. team is competing in San Juan, Puerto Rico, in the NORCECA Women’s U-18 Continental Championship. The tournament concludes Wednesday. The top two teams advance to the next year’s age-group FIVB World Championship.

CdM coach Steve Astor said Kipp should be back with the team for the Dave Mohs Championships. When she returns, look for Kipp to get time at the middle and outside spots.

NOTES

Third-ranked Huntington Beach and ninth-ranked Esperanza are among the teams competing in the Lakewood/Molten Classic this weekend. The semifinals are Monday at Lakewood at 8:30 a.m., the third-place match at 4 p.m. and championship match at 6:30 p.m. ... The Dave Mohs Championships are Sept. 9-10, with the finals on Sept. 12 at Edison. Pairings and pool information will be released next week.

GIRLS VOLLEYBALL PREVIEW

Contact the writer: dcalhoun@scng.com


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