Hartnell Finds Positives in Defeat at Cabrillo

Volleyball game at Cabrillo College, 0ct. 12
Volleyball game at Cabrillo College, 0ct. 12

APTOS, Calif. – Hartnell Volleyball fell short Oct. 12 on the home court of perennial state powerhouse Cabrillo College in Aptos, despite a comeback win in the third set and play that encouraged Hartnell Coach Jamie Pedroza.

The Panthers' 3-1 loss ended a 10-game winning streak and brought their season record to 17-3 and 3-1 in the Coast-North Conference. Hartnell will host College of San Mateo, another strong program at 16-5 and 3-1, on Oct. 17. Next is another home match against Skyline, also Coast-North.

The sets against Cabrillo were 18-25, 10-25, 26-28 and 19-25.

Pedroza said she felt good about the Panthers' scouting and game plan going into the match against a confident and relatively tall Cabrillo squad. The Seahawks have four players at 6 feet or more, and Hartnell has none above 5 feet 11.

"We were able to consistently hit around that," she said. "We had finesse shots and power – a lot of variety, which is important."

Pedroza also praised the Panthers' ability to give its setters those opportunities.

"I'd say overall we had a really strong night," she said.

Following a competitive first set and a lopsided second set, Pedroza swapped liberos, replacing sophomore starter Nhean Marquez (Alvarez) with freshman Gianna Cimino (Salinas). Cabrillo faltered against the new look, as the Panthers won their only set of the night in a see-saw battle.

"One thing we got better at during the match was our blocking," Pedroza said.

Sophomore Captain Sam Schaffer (Salinas) led the Panthers with 12 kills, followed by sophomore Megan Gonzalez, who had 11 kills and a team-leading 13 setting assists.

Marquez, who returned as libero late in the match, led the squad in digs, with 13.