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Foothill volleyball: Cents’ arsenal on display

Saugus uses three-pronged approach to defeat Grizzlies

Posted: April 13, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: April 13, 2012 1:55 a.m.

Saugus High’s Matt Coleman dives for a save against Golden Valley on Thursday at Golden Valley High School.

 

Golden Valley had one weapon. Saugus had three.

And despite a scrappy effort from an inexperienced Golden Valley boys volleyball team, Saugus displayed its size and balance on offense, winning 3-1 on Thursday at Golden Valley High School.

With wins of 26-24, 25-19, 18-25 and 25-21, Saugus completed a roller coaster first half of Foothill League play 3-2 and in third place.

The Centurions are 18-7 overall.

“We knew this was a big game because we wanted to finish the first half of league with a winning record,” said Saugus setter Zech Lee.

Playing in just his second match as the team’s starting setter, Lee tallied 33 assists and connected well with hitters on the outside and in the middle.

Matt Coleman led the Cents with 17 kills to go along with nine digs from the outside, while fellow outside hitter Max Nua and middle blocker Colby Wilson chipped in 12 kills apiece.

Coleman was playing in his second game of the season since returning from an ankle injury earlier in the week.

“I felt a lot more comfortable in the lineup today then I was on Tuesday,” Coleman said.

For Golden Valley (11-9, 1-4), the offense was centered on one player — Harvard University-bound senior Alec Schlossman.

Two days after a 37-kill performance against Hart on Tuesday, Schlossman backed it up with 29 kills and seven blocks Thursday.

He led several Grizzly rallies in the match, but Saugus made enough plays to hold off the comeback try.

“The fact that we did as well as we did given our size and our youth is pretty impressive,” said Golden Valley head coach Jeff Cody.

In the first game, Saugus had to fight back from a 7-2 deficit, eventually taking a 16-15 lead after three straight Coleman kills.

The teams traded blows back and forth from there until Wilson took over, slamming home each of the Centurions’ last three points for the narrow victory.

“I feel like we came out more lackadaisical than we should have,” Coleman said. “It kind of took a while to get going.”
By the second game, Saugus appeared to be rolling along fine after a quick start.

Although Golden Valley fought to within a point multiple times, it couldn’t close the gap.

There was no gap to close in game three, as the Grizzlies led wire-to-wire thanks to another strong 7-2 start.

Saugus committed seven service errors in the third game and Golden Valley got some much-needed help by middle blocker Tristan Murachanian, who finished the day with five kills.

The final game played out similar to the first. Neither team took a strong upper hand, but Saugus was able to mix up its offensive attack between the middle and the outside just enough to expose the Grizzlies.

At the halfway mark of league play, Golden Valley is tied with Hart for fourth place.

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