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CIF volleyball playoffs: Saugus puts up a fight in playoff exit

Centurions give No. 2 seed a run for money in seniors’, coach’s final match

Posted: November 7, 2012 2:00 a.m.
Updated: November 7, 2012 2:00 a.m.

The second game of Saugus girls volleyball’s first-round CIF-Southern Section Division IA match against La Salle High in Pasadena showed the Centurions that they could hang with No. 2 overall seed.

It also showed them that they should have taken advantage while they had a chance.

Saugus lost in three games Tuesday 25-17, 27-25, 25-15, but despite the loss had an impressive season.

The 2011 Foothill League champions were young in areas and lacked the same firepower they had in other areas from a year ago.

Nonetheless, they showed a lot of fight in 2012.

“We won a playoff game, knocked off Hart, which was tied for first at the time in the Foothill League, and we went five with the top three teams (in league) with the youth we had and the deficiencies we had (in certain areas),” said Saugus head coach Zach Ambrose.

And the Centurions (21-14) gave the 30-2 Lancers a run for their money.

Saugus had La Salle on the ropes ahead 24-23 and 25-24 in the second game, but couldn’t find a hole on serve to get past active libero Caroline Knop.

“Very good. Solid, solid team. Big at the net and an incredible libero,” Ambrose said. “But we rode Hannah Nua. They knew she was getting the ball. We knew she was getting the ball and she still found ways to score.”

Nua had a team-high 23 kills in the match to up her single-season school record to 502.

Her teammate Ashley Guthrie had 32 assists to push her school record total over 3,600.

But the air left the balloon after the second game and La Salle jumped out to an early double-digit lead in the third game.

“We did the most I think we could,” Ambrose said. “That second game may have been the best set we played all year. We were going toe-to-toe with the No. 2 team. We just didn’t have enough weapons to complement Hannah.”

Saugus loses a lot in the impending graduations of Nua and Guthrie. Ambrose, after eight seasons leading the program, is taking a hiatus from coaching to spend more time with his family.



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