Rancho Cucamonga – The Rancho Cucamonga Girls Volleyball team is working overtime.
For the eighth time this season and the sixth time in baseline league play, the Cougars found themselves fat in a five-set match. Outside hitter Brianna Brewer scored six goals and a block during that deciding set as Rancho Cucamonga scored a 23-25, 25-23, 20-25, 25-20, 15-12 win over Etiwanda on Tuesday evening. achieved.
Rancho Cucamonga was 1 of 4 teams tied for first place in the baseline league standings entering the final week of the regular season. The Cougars and Upland were victorious on Tuesday evening and controlled their championship fortunes going into the final league matches on Thursday. Rancho Cucamonga hosts St. Lucy, while Upland goes to Atiwanda.
Rancho Cucamonga (13-10, 6-3 in the league) is seeking a sixth consecutive baseline league championship of the program.
“It’s a very exciting situation for us, especially given how crazy this season has been,” said Cougars coach Jodi Postlmeier. “I am very proud of how these girls keep fighting and fighting for each other in every match. Nothing has been easy for them, so it is good for them to get a chance to make the last match great.”
Brewer got off to a good start on Tuesday but struggled several times in the third and fourth sets. She scored two goals at the end of the fourth set to get back on track and was practically invincible during the final set.
“It was all about the heart and wanting to fight with my team for a win,” said Brewer, who hit a match-high 22.
Etiwanda (18-6, 5-4) took a 3-0 lead in the fifth set, but Rancho Cucamonga quickly responded and took control, scoring 11-2. Brewer had five kills and a huge singles block for six points in that stretch.
“She’s always wanted to play a bigger role, and she loves to play in those big moments,” Postlemeier said of Brewer.
Etiwanda leveled 7–0 on a score of 11, the last four points on consecutive aces by Camry Elo.
But the rollercoaster set and the match ended in favor of Rancho Cucamonga. Brewer ends Atiwanda’s run with a murder, and older sister Andrea follows with one of her own. The match ended on back-to-back Ativanda attacking errors.
“We have a lot of experience going into five sets, so we know what it takes to win them,” said Andrea Brewer.
Rancho Cucamonga improved to 6-2 in a five-setter this season, including a 5-1 record in baseline league matches.
Rancho Cucamonga took a 9-3 lead in the opening set, but Etiwanda put together a 10-2 lead. Freshman setter Brooke Hansen served back-to-back aces to give the Eagles a 13-11 lead. Hansen later committed a murder and helped on two blocks. Gabby Bowling recorded her only kill to close the set for Etiwanda.
Etiwanda took a 20-13 advantage in the second set and took a two-set advantage over the Cougars. Rancho Cucamonga freshman Libero Carina Zaldivar stepped over the line and took a 9-0 lead with his serve. Brianna Brewer made four kills in the stretch and added another at set point to help Rancho Cucamonga level the draw.
Rancho Cucamonga took an early lead during the third set, but Etiwanda overtook senior middle blocker Iye Oloko, who scored five goals in six swings in the set. There were three aces bowling in that third set for the Eagles.
Etiwanda took a 4-0 lead in the fourth set, but Rancho Cucamonga rallied and eventually leveled the score at 10. The Cougars were taking a 21-20 lead late in the set, but Brianna Brewer recorded back-to-back kills, and Zaldivar served an ace to keep Rancho Cucamonga on set point. Atiwanda’s hitting error resulted in the deciding set.
Rancho Cucamonga’s big runs came during Thursday evening’s match when Jaldivar was on the service line.
“I wasn’t trying to get those points myself. I was just trying to get (Atiwanda) out of the system,” said Jaldivar, who recorded four aces. “The goal was to get the ball back towards us. Had to help and let our guilt go to work.”
Emma Tipekonic and Okolo made 12 kills to make way for Atiwanda. Hansen finished with six kills, four aces and 4 1/2 blocks. Allo recorded a match-high seven aces, and Okolo added three blocks for the Eagles.
Victoria Sears and Savannah Styles made eight and seven kills respectively for Rancho Cucamonga. Naylie Ramirez tied Zaldivar for the team lead with four aces, and Jada Duckett had two singles blocks for the Cougar.