Rocklin girls volleyball falls to Gregori in semifinals

El Camino again Division II champs
By: Amanda Calzada/Placer Herald Correspondent
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The Rocklin High girls volleyball team had to travel to Modesto to face the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division II No. 2 Gregori High Jaguars but fell in that semifinal match 3-0 last week.

That loss eliminated the Thunder and advanced Gregori to the championship game. The Jaguars were defeated by eventual champions El Camino 3-1.

“Well, things didn’t go the way we hoped,” said Rocklin head coach Dave Muscarella. “We are a very young team and return 12 players. Hopefully we will grow and continue to improve for next season.”

Muscarella complimented the Thunders’ Bethany Mandon on her play and said Kallie Elder and Megan McBroome did a nice job of setting the ball.

Earlier in the playoffs, Rocklin had two decisive victories against Tracy (3-0) and Benicia (3-1).

In round one, the Thunder defeated Tracy in four sets, 25-17, 31-29 and 25-12. That put Rocklin on the road to Benecia to take on the No. 3 Panthers in round two.

The girls in blue stepped up big Nov. 8 to take all but the second game and defeat Benicia 25-21, 24-26, 25-22 and 25-18.

“Bethany Mandon and Jolie Meade were unstoppable at middle hitting,” said Coach Muscarella.

Mandon lead the Thunder against Tracy with an 82-percent kill rate (9-11). She came back to get 14 kills against the Panthers. Relentless, Mandon had 23 attacks.

Gregori got a first-round bye and defeated No. 7 seed Vacaville 3-0 to advance. No. 1 El Camino defeated No. 5 Ponderosa to reach the championship at UC Davis.