Beckman's Kelly Archer spikes the ball but is blocked by Orange Lutheran's Taylor Wheatley, left, and Reegan Dennis during the first round of the CIF-SS girls volleyball playoffs Tuesday.

Slow start doesn't stop Orange Lutheran


After allowing the first set of Tuesday's CIF-SS Division 1AA match against Beckman slip away, Orange Lutheran eventually got on the right path.

The visiting Lancers (16-8) went on to win the next three sets to take the match, 24-26, 25-20, 25-14, 25-21.

Orange Lutheran next play host to Mira Costa of Manhattan Beach in the second round Thursday.

"It took us a little while to get our rhythm going and once we settled in, we did some good things," Orange Lutheran coach Andrew Mabry said. "We talked about it all night ... settling in, finding our rhythm."

All CIF-SS girls volleyball playoff brackets

The Lancers probably should have swept the match. In the first set, they had a 23-20 lead, but the Patriots rallied to take a 24-23 lead. With the score tied at 24-24, Beckman closed the opener with a kill from Myranda Cunningham and an ace from Monica Rau.

"When teams are playing defense like they were, that forces some errors on your side," Mabry said.

Apparently, that was the wakeup call Orange Lutheran needed.

Taylor Wheatley led the Lancers with 22 kills. Kaitlyn Gibbons had 11 kills and nine digs. Setter Emily Blair had 45 assists.

The Lancers now draw the Mustangs for the second consecutive season. The teams met in the second round last year and the Lancers won in five.

"They're obviously a powerhouse," Mabry said. "Any time you get to play them it is a good opportunity, so we just have to come back with it."

Also in 1AA:

Dana Hills 3, Long Beach Wilson 1: Tia Scambray led the host Dolphins (24-7) with 14 kills and Nicole Matheis had 12 kills and 21 digs in the 25-19, 13-25, 25-21, 25-19 home victory.

In 4AA:

Connelly 3, Chino 0: Belinda Mullally had 11 kills and Grace Cuevas had six in the 25-12, 25-15, 25-16 home victory for the Koalas (17-12). Connelly will visit St. Paul of Santa Fe Springs in the second round Thursday.

In 2A:

Whittier Christian 3, Tustin 0: Deanna Blaine had 15 kills and Kylee Wolfe added 12 in the 25-6, 25-16, 25-21 home victory.

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