The JV volleyball team left the Acalanes parking lot at the crack of dawn Saturday morning and returned victorious nearly 13 hours later as champions of the Silver Division at this weekend’s Berkeley Invitational Volleyball Tournament.
Don’s fans were treated to a day of exciting volleyball as Acalanes soundly defeated Berean Christian and Liberty High School before dropping a hard-fought match to San Ramon Valley at the end of pool play.
In bracket play, the Dons beat Cardinal Newman in straight sets to earn a spot in the championship match against Lincoln High School. Every player on the Dons squad contributed during the three-set battle against Lincoln. The front row proved to be both a defensive and offensive asset, as stellar blocking from Alara Rose, Kylie Wood and Aly Kirke helped shut down Lincoln’s hitters while Makenzie Sauer, Tate Huisingh, Lauren Davis and Lyla Cox returned fire and racked up the kills for Acalanes. Audrey Passalacqua and Emma Johnson exhibited nerves of steel with clutch serving and defense when the team needed it most. Digging machines Sydney Sowarby, Daisy Sibley and Maren Takeuchi made sure that nothing from Lincoln hit the floor while setters Sara Coons and Aisha Mohanty expertly managed the court.
The battle against Lincoln stretched to three sets after the Dons won the first but narrowly lost the second, 23-25. The third set started with Acalanes fans on their feet cheering wildly, partially because they needed to stretch after sitting in a gym all day and partially because they wanted a speedy Dons victory so they could hurry home and get to the Volleyball Boosters party/fundraiser that was already underway. The strategy proved effective as the Dons made quick work of the third set, winning 15-6 and securing the division’s top spot.
The Freshman team played in the San Ramon Tournament on Saturday. This team has shown great improvement in a short time together. The girls displayed great effort and teamwork, winning 3 of 5 matches on the day and taking the title in the Bronze division. Great job Dons!