Pacifica Christian Girls Volleyball Team Back On The Right Track

Seawolves look toward CIF playoffs with another successful season

Wednesday, 23 Oct 2013, 6:39:00 AM

Dennis Freeman

Last year at

this time, the Pacifica Christian girls volleyball team was rolling through its schedule on a way to a

CIF Southern Section Division 4A championship game appearance against Rolling

Hills Prep.

The Seawolves

entered the contest having already disposed of Rolling Hills Prep earlier in

the season and just about gone roughshod everyone else on its way to posting

an outstanding 30-2 mark.

The Seawolves

went through the first founds of the CIF championship tournament dispatching

Duarte, Cate, Archer School for Girls, and St. Anthony with relative ease, sweeping

those four teams by winning 12 games and dropping only two. But against Rolling

Hills Prep, the magic stopped. So did Pacifica Christian’s dream of a title.

The

Seawolves dropped the first set 25-15, and wound up coming up on the short of

the stick, losing to Rolling Hills Prep, 3-2. It was a devastating defeat, said Pacifica

Christian head coach Julie Bennett. Bennett, who was assistant coach to Billy

Allen last season, said it loss was a tough one to swallow, especially for the

players.

“They were

heartbroken,” Bennett said. “Everyone felt like they let everyone else down.

They were very upset.”

Well, with

returning stars Grace Minchin and Maile Lane back in the fold, Pacifica

Christian seems to have responded to that defeat to do quite well this season.

The Seawolves are just coming off winning the Brentwood Tournament, and have

recorded another stellar season, rolling to a 16-4 overall record after beating

Buckley, and sitting on top of the Liberty League volleyball standings.

Minchin and

Lane, who leads the team in kills and digs, are the top players for the

Seawolves. Minchin, who is weighing where she will be attending college in the

fall, is a player that Bennett sees as being good enough to play at the next

level. The first year head coach feels the same about Lane, who is just a

junior.

“Everyone

can always count on them,” Bennett said. "Grace Minchin, she’ll be playing

somewhere at the next level. Maile Lane will be playing somewhere.”

But Bennett

has other players who have also stepped up to the plate and contributed as

well. Elizabeth Hooks (serves) and Shannon Volpis (blocks) are a couple other

players that the Seawolves counted on this season.

“We have a

lot of girls from last year’s team,” Bennett said. “It is a good combination of

leadership. Everyone has a different role.”     

But all in

all, this has been a season of learning on the fly for both coach and players. One

of the adjustments has been teaching her team about getting a bit tougher, said

Bennett.

Building toughness

in the team is something she has to continually work on, said Bennett. After

going through a mid-season slump where the team dropped a couple of games, that

toughness seems to have come around just in time for the postseason.

“I have a

different style of coaching,” Bennett said. As a female the players can relate

more emotionally. I have been trying to work with them on their mental

toughness.”

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