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2006 La Jolla High Beach City Invitational Volleyball Tournament

The mighty Mustangs finished fourth overall and Leanne Stennett and Kenzie Aries earned spots on the all tournament team.

The North County Times on San Dieguito Volleyball

San Dieguito empties bench, settles for fourth place

By: TOM SHANAHAN - For The North County Times

LA JOLLA ---- San Dieguito Academy girls volleyball coach Dexter Harvey was happy with his team's three wins on Friday as the Mustangs won their pool in the sixth annual La Jolla High Beach City Invitational to advance to Saturday's Gold Division championship bracket.

He continued to be impressed on Saturday when the Mustangs, ranked ninth in the San Diego Section, defeated Valencia in the first round and La Jolla in the quarterfinals. But once Harvey's team lost to Vista Murrieta in the semifinals Saturday afternoon, setting up a third-place match with rival Bishop's in the evening, the veteran coach decided to turn the best-of-three match into a version an NFL exhibition game.

Harvey played everyone on his roster as the Mustangs fell to Bishop's 25-20, 25-13 to settle for fourth place. He explained an upcoming match with Bishop's, a Coastal South League rival, in two weeks is more important to his Coastal North League team than a tournament's third-place trophy.

"We played well in the tournament Friday and Saturday, but we were out of gas after playing a very, very good Vista Murrieta team," Harvey said. "We play Bishop's in a couple of weeks, and if you know (Bishop's coach) Tod Mattox, he'll have every rotation dissected before we get there. So I said, 'Let's not show them anything. We'll let everyone play and in a couple of weeks, we'll play them heads up when we're not tired.' "

Vista Murrieta went on to win the title of the 32-team tournament, defeating Anaheim Esperanza in the final between Southern Section schools.

San Dieguito was led by 5-foot-10 senior Leanne Stennett, who announced Friday an oral commitment to play for Azusa Pacific University.

"We weren't expecting that," Stennett said of Harvey emptying the bench, "but he knows what he's doing and we trust he's doing the right thing. It was good for a lot of girls to get some playing time."

Stennett said the Mustangs entered the weekend focused on improving their passing and defense.

"We came out Saturday with a lot of energy and we stepped up our passing and defense," she said. "There were a lot of good teams in this tournament and a lot of girls got some good experience playing at this level."


Gantz-led Bishop's tops San Dieguito for third

By Nicole Vargas

October 8, 2006

The Bishop's girls volleyball team had hardly enough time to savor its Scripps Ranch Tournament title from a week ago before it was battling for its next one.

Despite a deep field and being down a starting setter, the Knights took third at the Beach City Invitational, defeating San Dieguito 25-19, 25-12 at La Jolla High yesterday.

It was the best finish by a local team in the tournament, which featured nationally ranked teams in Vista Murrieta and Anaheim Esperanza.

No. 38 Vista Murrieta upended No. 34 Esperanza 25-16, 25-22 for the championship behind tournament MVP Kayla Varney, who will play next year at UC Davis.

Both, though, had to overcome challenges from local teams to reach the final.

Bishop's (19-2) was tied 24-24 with Esperanza in the first game before losing 26-24, 25-14.

San Dieguito (14-5) won the first game in its semifinal against Vista Murrieta before losing 23-25, 25-19, 15-9.

Bishop's setter Julie Gantz said the Knights didn't change their approach for the third-place match.

A sophomore starting in place of senior Natalia Wrobel, who was on a college recruiting trip, Gantz was expected to quarterback the team.

“It was hard,” admitted Gantz, “but I knew if I did my best my team would help me out.”

That included not only her go-to seniors in outside hitter Nicole Ballon-Landa and middle blocker Katherine Fiedler, but breakout performances from juniors Devin Nelson and Jacqueline Rhodes.

“People see our 6-2 middle (Fiedler) and Nicole, but we have kids doing their roles just as well,” Bishop's coach Tod Mattox said. “The nice thing is Julie had a nice day. She connected very well with Devin, and she had the best day of her career.”

In the end, it was a kill by sophomore Carly Bollert from Gantz that sealed the third-place match. Bollert had five kills, while Rhodes tallied eight and Ballon-Landa six.

Despite the loss, San Dieguito coach Dexter Harvey said his team is headed in the right direction.

“We've already won more (matches) than last year,” said Harvey. “I'm very happy with what we're doing, and obviously the most important tournament is (the San Diego Section playoffs).”

The San Diego Union Tribune on San Dieguito Girls Volleyball



Beach City Tournament

All-tournament: MVP-Kayla Varney (Vista Murrieta), Kamecka Rozier (VM), Cassie Hamilton (VM), Jessica Welch (Anaheim Esperanza), Christy Hudson (E), Julie Gantz (Bishop's), Laurel Casey (Bi), Leanne Stennett (San Dieguito), MacKenzie Aries (SDA), Faith Steinwedell (Santa Fe Christian), Savanah Thomas (Woodland Hills Taft), Kelly Clausen (Tri-City Christian).

Gold Division
Championship: Vista Murrieta def. Anaheim Esperanza 2-0; Third place: Bishop's def. San Dieguito 2-0; Semifinals: Vista Murrieta def. San Dieguito 2-1; Esperanza def. Bishop's 2-0; Quarterfinals: San Dieguito def. La Jolla 2-0; Vista Murrieta def. Lake Elsinore Temescal Canyon 2-0; Esperanza def. Poway; Bishop's def. Escondido.

Round one: San Dieguito def. Valencia 2-1; La Jolla def. Brawley 2-0; Vista Murrieta def. Horizon 2-0; Temescal Canyon def. Woodland Hills Taft 2-1; Poway def. Santa Fe Christian 2-1; Esperanza def. Costa Mesa Estancia 2-0; Bishop's def. Pittsburgh, Penn.; Escondido def. RBV.

Gold Consolation
Fifth place: Santa Fe Christian def. Taft 2-1; Semifinals: Taft def. Escondido; SFC def. Temescal Canyon, forfeit; Quarterfinals: Escondido def. Valencia 2-0; Taft def. Poway 2-0; SFC def. La Jolla; Temescal Canyon def. RBV; Round one: Valencia def. Brawley 2-1; Taft def. Horizon 2-0; SFC def. Estancia 2-0; RBV def. Baldwin.

Silver Division
Championship: Tri-City Christian def. Ramona 2-1; Consolation: Canyon Crest def. Cerritos Gahr 2-1; Chandler, Ariz. Basha def. OLP 2-1; Semifinals: Tri-City Christian def. University City 2-0; Granada Hills def. Ramona 2-0; Quarterfinals: Tri-City Christian def. Canyon Crest 2-0; Gahr def. University City 2-0; Granada Hills def. OLP 2-1; Ramona def. Basha 2-0.

Bronze Division
Las Vegas Centennial def. Chaparral 14-25, 25-23, 16-14.

Consolation Games
Championship: Coronado def. Imperial 2-0; Semifinals: Coronado def. Marian 2-1; Third place: SW Southwest def. Marian; Imperial def. SW Southwest 2-1; Quarterfinals: SW Southwest def. Marian 2-1; Coronado def. Imperial 2-0.


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