By GERARDO RECINOS
The Bulldog boys’ volleyball continue adding to the legend of their best season in program history after taking sole-possession of first place in the Diablo Foothill Athletic League with a 3-2 win over Dougherty Valley on April 12.
In the first set, Dougherty Valley’s Thomas Nelson dominated Alhambra with his monster jump serve. “I can say with confidence that this one player could have defeated us on his own if he had made a few more serves in the last three sets of the match,” said second-year head coach Peter Crowley.
In the second set, Alhambra battled back from a five-point deficit to tie things up at 22-22. At that point however they were hard done by some poor service and ended up losing 23-25.
Caught in the position they put Miramonte in during their last DFAL match, Alhambra was forced to reach deep and rally.
In set three, after falling behind the first few points, opposite hitter Nick Lucido served nine consecutive points to put Alhambra in the drivers seat. Ahead six points at 20-14, Alhambra lost focus and allowed DV to come back on them and tie the game at 23-23 before Will Jochum finished the set with a decisive spike followed by a block.
In set 4, Alhambra led the entire match, although Dougherty Valley’s Jon Cavote had a number of key serves and spikes to keep Dougherty Valley in the set.
In the final set, Alhambra feel behind on serve receive, but fought back to tie the match at 7-7 before going ahead for good.
The match could have gone either way, but again Alhambra played with passion and focus and won the day,” said Crowley.
“Jerald Jianoran was MVP of the match, but Allin Torio the libero is the unsung hero of the match. He got to virtually everything,” he said.
With the win the 15-2 Bulldogs position themselves in a great spot as a possible number one seed in the North Coast Section Division II playoffs. Their only two losses this season have come against Division I teams California-San Ramon and Antioch High School.
As of Tribune deadline on April 13, MaxPreps has the Bulldogs ranked as the fourth best team in NCS, but a win over Dougherty Valley should do the trick to move them above the Wildcats in the rankings.
Alhambra will welcome the Las Lomas Knights to Martinez on Thursday, April 14 for the final game of the first round of DFAL matches.