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Bulldogs blanked by Yuma

September 14, 2001|By ERIC GALVAN, Sports Writer

CALEXICO — With the Imperial Valley League season right around the corner, the Calexico High volleyball team wanted to enter it with a little momentum.

It didn't get that in its match against Yuma High here Thursday, as it fell 3-0.

What the Bulldogs did get was an idea of what the team needs to work on so it can prepare for the league.

At times Calexico looked flat and out of sync, but in certain instances the Bulldogs looked like the team full of potential coach Cami Mohamed thought she had.

"Right now we're such a young team with a lot of growing to do," said Mohamed. "Tonight we just had too many unforced errors and serving errors. But there were times when they showed sparks of greatness."

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Once such moment was the second game. After getting blown out 15-5 in the first game, Calexico rallied in the second before falling 17-15.

"Our girls started slow in the first, way too slow. But they picked it up in the second," Mohamed said. "That momentum from the second game then carried over to the third. I thought we played so well in the third, that even when we were down, it felt like we were winning."

The Bulldogs ended up falling 15-4 in the third.

Leading Calexico was Melissa Noriega — one of two seniors on the team — finishing with 14 digs and 12 kills. Alexa Sandoval added 11 digs.

Noriega said she wasn't at all disappointed with her team's performance.

"I think, more than anything, this shows what we need to work on, which is our serving," said Noriega. "Right now we know where our team is at. We just need to work on a few things and bring it all together for league.

"As far as Yuma goes, they played really good tonight. You have to really give them credit. They deserved it."

The Criminals jumped to a 7-0 lead in the first game. The Bulldogs responded with two points, but Yuma's Ashley Heidrich accounted for seven straight points to lead a Criminal 8-3 run.

Down 5-0 in the second game, Yuma scored nine consecutive points to take a four-point lead. Calexico responded with six straight points before the teams exchanged the next nine points.

With a 15-14 lead, the Bulldogs couldn't put away the Criminals. Down by one, Yuma's Erika Marquez scored three points to give the Criminals the game.

Things got easier for Yuma in the third game as it jumped to a 9-2 lead. The Bulldogs added another point, but with the score 9-3, the Criminals outscored Calexico 6-1 to close the contest.

"Coming into this match our girls had a problem closing games and they really improved on that tonight," said Yuma coach Maurine Evans. "But Calexico is a scrappy team and they played and fought hard."

The Bulldogs (1-1) will play at Central Union High in El Centro at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

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