Hawks miss out by a hair

It was all there for Anzar High volleyball. The hometown crowd
was in a frenzy. The Hawks were up 2-0 in games over King City, a
team they had never beaten. And team statistician Cameron White had
the clippers and scissors ready to let the Hawks players shave his
head.
SAN JUAN BAUTISTA – It was all there for Anzar High volleyball. The hometown crowd was in a frenzy. The Hawks were up 2-0 in games over King City, a team they had never beaten. And team statistician Cameron White had the clippers and scissors ready to let the Hawks players shave his head.

After winning the first two games 15-12, 15-13, Anzar needed just one more game to celebrate like it never had before.

It never happened. One head of hair was spared.

The Mustangs rallied to win the next three games – 15-6, 15-12 and 15-1 (rally scoring) to pop the Hawks’ victory balloon. King City (19-6, 12-2 Mission Trail Athletic League) rode the pinpoint serving of Lindsey LaVelle in the final game. LaVelle majestically hit every void in the Hawks’ defense for 14 consecutve points with three aces during that span. The Hawks (20-11, 8-5) had a case of communication breakdown as no one seemed to know who was taking the first pass.

“It was nerves,” said Hawks head coach Tamara Smith. “And King City is a good team.”

“We got down and couldn’t get it back,” said Hawks middle blocker Kiely White. “It was a big disappointment.”

White, for one, didn’t disappoint. She had a match-high 30 kills, which equalled her school record. When the Hawks needed a sideout, they went to the 6-foot White, who was effective in the front row, as well as the back. When White was involved in the offense, the Hawks were formidable. When she wasn’t, Anzar was on the defensive.

“Kiely’s had a stellar season,” said King City coach Debbie Hudson. “She really pounds the ball. You have to be aware of where she is.”

The Mustangs’ best hitter was outside hitter Tricia Frudden, who had a team-high 26 kills. Frudden, who only stood 5-8 at best, could really rise and carry a big swing.

The Hawks ralllied from 10-7 deficits to win both of their games. In game one, an overhead reverse bump by Casey Norton got sideout. Cassie King served one of her three aces and 12 service points for 8-10. A kill by White and it was 9-10. Down 10-12, a four-hit violation by the Mustangs and a Hawks point led Hudson to call timeout. Stephanie Smith’s kill tied the game 12-12.

Norton’s block gave Anzar game point. A White kill ended it.

The Hawks jumped to a 6-2 lead in game two behind one of Treva Crocker’s six blocks. King City stormed back for 9-6 as Frudden let loose with a power rip. The Hawks rebounded with strong serving from Corey Strasser. A Stephanie Smith dink knotted the match at 10-10. After some mistakes to fall behind 11-13, the Hawks gathered themselves to tie the game on a kill from the back row from White. King’s effort hit the net and went over for game point. White ended it with another kill.

“I’m not surprised Anzar gave us a game,” said Mustangs setter Whitney Hudson, who played well for being just a freshman. “They did a great job.”

Anzar has three matches remaining on its schedule and will probably have to win all three to receive an at-large berth to the Division V Central Coast Section Tournament. The Hawks are at Soledad this Friday.

Hawks wings: Setter Gena Ray had 39 assists for the Hawks, while Strasser had 11 digs… On the King City roster was junior Mallorie Wilson, who might be familiar to Hollister High sports fans. Wilson played for the Baler junior varsity in both volleyball and basketball last year… Eight King City male students sat in the upper righthand stands and displayed the spelling of M-U-S-T-A-N-G-S taped on each of their chests. It was a nice touch to an intense match. “It added a lot of spirit to the match,” said Cameron White, who added some spirit to the match, himself, when he put himself on the cutting edge.

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