Glendora- The 2-0 Regents faced off against the 2-0 Grizzlies in a preseason dual for local bragging rights. Los Osos had more game, and size, than St. Lucy's could handle, and handed the Regents their first defeat of the year.
The Grizzlies set the tone early in the first set, getting the ball into the hands of their 6-2 outside hitter, Ashton Gooden-Smith, who made five early kills to put Los Osos comfortably in the lead. The Regents struggled to string consecutive points together, calling timeout trailing 4-10. The Regents were not able to figure much out during the timeout and the Grizzly lead stretched to 9. Despite amazing Regent defense on the final point, where LaPierre, Bast, and Bruchet made impossible digs on hard driven balls, St. Lucy's dropped set one 25-16.
Not much changed in set two, except maybe the number of Regent errors (which increased.) St. Lucy's started at an 0-4 deficit, serving the ball out and hitting into the antenna. The Regents would periodically put one down, but their one-and-out scoring was insufficient to keep pace with the Grizzlies who were picking up kills in threes and fours. The Regents were trailing 2-8 after three servers. Sarah Bruchet's serve saw the Regents get to within two, 6-8, but St. Lucy's would get no closer than that. St. Lucy's took a timeout at 13-17 to discuss things. Something terribly wrong must have been said in the huddle because it was all Los Osos after the timeout. Grizzlies finished out set two 25-15.
A lot changed in set three. The Regents came out on fire and jumped out to a 2-0 lead on a wicked kill by Loryn Carter. The Regents maintained a two to three point lead through the beginning of the set. Los Osos caught up to the Regents at 9, but Roni LaPierre's kill snatched the Lucy lead back. Los Osos caught up again at 13, this time LaPierre tooled the block to regain the lead. The Grizzlies finally caught up and overtook the Regents at 17, gaining their first lead 18-17. It was a see-saw battle from there. Kill by LaPierre. Roll shot by Gooden-Smith. Tip by Loryn Carter. A dubious "over" call against the Regents gave the Grizzlies a two point lead, followed by a thunderous put away of an overpass by Gooden-Smith, and Los Osos was thinking about packing their bags, up 23-20. The Regents were not going to roll over. They battled back to within one point, 22-23, when Sydney Bast's attempt was blocked straight down. A net violation gave the Regents one last hope, with Bast serving down 23-24. Unfortunately, LaPierre's attempt was blocked and the Grizzlies pulled out the straight sets win, taking the third game 25-23.
The Regent stat leaders were Roni LaPierre, 9 kills 11 digs; Loryn Carter, 5 kills, 2 blocks; Sydney Bast, 5 kills, 2 aces, 13 digs; Juliet McClure, 27 assists, 8 digs and Sarah Bruchet, 11 digs. In the end, Los Osos' size and experience won the day. Although St. Lucy's did not come away with a win, it was not a complete loss. The Regents learned a lot in this match that will serve them well as they prepare to face quality teams in the future. In fact, there's even chance that these two teams could meet again at the Durango Classic or the Redondo Union Tournament. Lucy girls are very good students so don't be surprised if they apply what they learned tonight and get a different outcome.