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West Ranch volleyball ousted in first round

Posted: May 7, 2013 10:20 p.m.
Updated: May 7, 2013 10:20 p.m.

West Ranch's Christian Cayabyab hangs his head after missing the ball during a CIF-Southern Section Division I game against Orange Lutheran on Tuesday at West Ranch.

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Welcome to the top playoff division in Southern California.

After moving up from CIF-Southern Section Division II last year to Division I this year, West Ranch was swept 3-0 by the Orange Lutheran Lancers on Tuesday night at West Ranch High School by scores of 25-21, 25-19, 25-19.

It was a quick exit for the Foothill League champion Wildcats, who made it to the semifinals in the Division II bracket last year.

“We’re in Division I. There’s no easy matchups,” said West Ranch senior Tanner Skabelund. “Everyone is good. Everyone has earned the right to be here.”

The Foothill League as a whole moved up to the division this season after competing in Division II the previous 10 years.

Orange Lutheran (19-12) came in as a third-place finisher from the Trinity League, but it was a team that looked every bit as talented and balanced a league champion.

West Ranch (22-10) fell victim to the Lancers’ excellent serve-receive and ball control throughout.

“We knew (West Ranch) had some big hitters over there, and we really had to make some adjustments,” said Orange Lutheran head coach Marc Laulhere.

The Wildcats led for a brief period early in the first game, but Orange Lutheran was in control the rest of the way.

“They were being aggressive the whole time. They didn’t look back,” said West Ranch head coach Nate Sparks of the Lancers. “We didn’t play a bad match, but we were at about 90 percent of what we were capable of, and they were at 100 percent.”

Skabelund led the Wildcats with nine kills and setter Christian Cayabyab tallied 26 assists.

Four West Ranch players, Andrew Dieterle, Clay Burns, Brenton Scott and Adam Hersh, each added five kills.

But the more efficient offense in the match was clearly Orange Lutheran, which pulled away in game two after breaking an early 8-8 tie.

In game three, the Lancers opened up with a 4-0 lead and never looked back.

Orange Lutheran was led by Reid Dominguez’s 18 kills, while Jon Predney added eight kills and Chase Dominguez had seven.

A group of eight seniors, most of whom played a big role in West Ranch’s first boys volleyball league title in school history, ended their high school careers.

“They have done a phenomenal job,” Sparks said. “That group of seniors, they’ve done more than any other.”

 

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