Volleyball suffers swift loss

Sebastian Noren and Sebastian Noren

The Vaqueros men’s volleyball team lost at home 0-3 (27-30, 23-30, and 26-30) against the Santa Monica Corsairs Friday, making it their second 0-3 sweep in a row.

City College is now 1-8 overall, and 0-2 in the Western State Conference.

“We had the lead in every game but could not finish,” said Vaquero Curtis Oliver.

The Vaqs were looking to bounce back after their 0-3 loss against El Camino College on March 2 and started out well, scoring the first points against Santa Monica’s defense.

Both teams seemed nervous and made a couple of mistakes. The Corsairs moved up to a 3-6 lead before the Vaqs started to get their game on track. Vaquero Tony Acosta got the Vaquero’s back within striking distance after some nice plays and a great serving to nip away at the Corsair’s 7-8 lead.

After a good run, the Vaqs took the lead to 10-9, then to a four-point lead of 15-11. The Vaqs seemed to carry the momentum, but after some good digs and well-executed plays on offense, Santa Monica fought back to make it 17-16, forcing Head Coach Donal McGraw to call the first time out of the game.

After only two minutes, the Corsairs took the game to 17-19, causing coach McGraw to call another time out.

Mana Guerreiro was key to the Vaquero offense, successfully setting teammates up with good striking opportunities, and ending the game with 25 total assists.

Santa Monica controlled the rest of game-one ending it at 27-30.

Vaqs came out to the second game with regained confidence, and quickly moved to a four-point lead at 8-4.

The teams traded volleys, but the Vaqueros increased their lead to five points at 13-8. The Corsairs continued to sneak up on the Vaqs to trail 15-13. Curtis Oliver, who led the Vaqs with 15 kills, got a great kill for the Vaqs and brought them back to a three-point lead. Both teams were fighting well, and at 21-18 it seemed that the Vaqs could win the game. After some sloppy Vaquero defense, the Corsairs took the lead after a five point run to make it 22-24, which urged coach McGraw to call his fourth time out.

The time out seemed to have little effect on the players, as the Corsairs cruised to a 23-30 game-two victory.

Vaqueros started game three in the same way as they did in game two, taking a three-point lead at 6-3. The Vaqs played well and moved up to a six-point lead at 14-8 after a good kill by Julian Lopez.

The Corsairs stepped up their game and after a four-point run, forced Coach McGraw to call time out at 14-12. Santa Monica continued to hustle, taking the lead 15-16. The game began heating up as both teams played well in front of the net, to level the score to 21-21.

The teams were neck-to-neck up until 25-25 when Corsairs ran for two points to take the lead to 25-27. After another Vaquero time out, Santa Monica kept control of the game to win 26-30.

Coach McGraw seemed worried about the way his team’s consistency changes during the games.

“We become another team at 23 points, we get quiet and make errors,” McGraw said. He also said that he thinks his team competed well and that Santa Monica is a good team to watch.

The Vaq’s next game is today at 6 p.m. against Moorpark College in Moorpark.