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SVC falls in 4AA final after promising start

OCVARSITY.COM
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High school volleyball.

CYPRESS – In the end, Hemet's experience proved to be the deciding factor.

The Saddleback Valley Christian girls volleyball team won two of the first three sets Saturday morning in the CIF-SS Division 4AA final against Hemet, but the Warriors were never able to close out the match at Cypress College.

Hemet, the second seed, rallied to win the fourth and fifth sets to take the match, 25-20, 15-25, 23-25, 25-22, 15-10, and claimed a third consecutive CIF title.

The top-seeded Warriors finish the season at 28-5, and a berth in the CIF Southern California Regionals is likely next. The regional pairings will be released today.


OCVarsity Hot Shots: CIF-SS volleyball finals


"I like the way that our girls battled," SVC coach Jon Greene said. "I think the third time in a row of Hemet being here (in the finals), they were able to steady out and we were getting excited and the moment got a little past us.

"I like the way we competed. Hemet is a great team. I thought they turned up their level of play starting in Game 4 and got a lot more active on defense."

After the first set, the Warriors stormed back in the second with an impressive 25-15 victory. SVC scored the first 10 points in the set, cruising to victory.

In the third, SVC fought off a late charge by Hemet. The Warriors had a 23-17 lead, but the Bulldogs fought their way back to get to 24-23, forcing a timeout. Out of the break, Chelsea Duhs ended the set with a kill for a 2-1 lead.

From there, Hemet took over.

Heidi Dyer led SVC with 16 kills. Duhs added 12. Duhs and Mackenzie Burns are the only seniors on the SVC roster.

"They're phenomenal," Greene said of Duhs and Burns. "They're great leaders and great people. I can't say the job they did with the (eight) underclassmen, getting them to be a team and to buy into the team concept and to play for one another."

Contact the writer: dcalhoun@ocregister.com


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