For San Luis Obispo High boys volleyball coach Manny Carter, the emotions were a bit hard to put into words Thursday.
“I can’t really describe it right now. I’m a little overwhelmed with happiness,” Carter said.
Trailing fellow PAC 7 contender Righetti 2-0 after the first two sets in Santa Maria, the second-place Tigers rallied for three straight wins, claiming a 14-25, 18-25, 27-25, 25-22, 15-13 victory.
It was the Warriors’ first league loss of the season and kept San Luis Obispo’s league-championship hopes alive. Both teams are 7-1 in the PAC 7.
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“It was a really intense match. Righetti took it to us,” Carter said. “They really wanted an outright league title, but we battled.”
San Luis Obispo came into this season looking to add to its recent Central Coast dynasty, as the Tigers have won at least a share of a league title in all but one year since the start of the 2001 season. That streak was put in serious jeopardy earlier this season, however, when the upstart Warriors took a four-set win over San Luis Obispo.
Thanks to Thursday’s performance, though, the Tigers still have a realistic chance of attaining another banner.
Nick Butier had 17 kills, and Sam Duval finished with 12 kills for San Luis Obispo.
Keilan Meertens had 47 assists in the win, and teammate John Shokohi had 23 digs.
The Tigers will look to clinch a share of the title by getting past Paso Robles and then Arroyo Grande to wrap up the regular season next week.
Arroyo Grande 3, Pioneer Valley 1
The third-place Eagles dropped the first set to the Panthers but came back to win 27-29, 27-25, 25-22, 25-13.
Danny Meritt had 17 kills, Andrew Midyett had 11, and Derek Johnson had nine for Arroyo Grande (6-2).
Bill Shires had six kills for the Eagles, while Kevin Glass distributed 48 assists.
Ayala 5, Arroyo Grande 3
The Eagles led 3-1 going into the seventh inning before losing the lead in the opener of the Don Lugo Tournament to the Chino Hills school.
Cal Poly signee Colton Haynes pitched the first five innings for Arroyo Grande (13-5), finishing with six strikeouts and no walks.
Kyle Raubinger led the Eagles’ offense by going 3 for 3 with two RBI.
The Eagles will take on tournament host Don Lugo today before playing San Juan Hills and Los Alamitos on Saturday.
TRACK AND FIELD
BOYS: Lompoc 72.5, Morro Bay 63.5; GIRLS: Morro Bay 81, Lompoc 54
The Pirates had three girls win multiple individual events in the LPL dual.
Tess Volkov won the 400-meter run in 1 minute, 4.4 seconds and the long jump at 14 feet, 7 inches for Morro Bay; teammate Olivia Watt was first in the 100 hurdles (17.6 seconds) and 300 hurdles (51.4); and Rylee Fee took the 1,600 (5:54.8) and 3,200 (13:28.1).
Carina Hampp also added a win in the 800 (2:40.2) for the Morro Bay girls and was part of two victorious relay teams.
On the boys side, Morro Bay got two wins each from Billy Vedrin (4:49.5 in the 1,600 and 2:13.1 in the 800) and Louis Mennel (11 feet in the pole vault and 18-9 in the long jump).
The Pirates’ Ryan Wheat, coming off of a recent school-record clearance of 6-4 in the boys high jump, won that event Thursday at 6-0.
Arroyo Grande at Ojai Tournament
Playing in the USTA Boys 16 Division, the Eagles’ No. 1 singles player, Eli Whittle, was 1-1.
He defeated his first opponent, David Barron from Oak View, 6-0, 6-0, before falling 7-6 (7-5), 2-6, 6-4 to San Marino’s James Wade, the tournament’s third seed and TennisRecruiting.net’s 34th-ranked sophomore in the state.
Arroyo Grande’s Sean Hollister played in the CIF Boys 18 Division and won his first-round bout with Bakersfield Christian’s Sullivan Rouche, 6-4, 7-5, before losing to Abraham Hewko from Palm Dessert, 6-0, 7-5.
In doubles, Arroyo Grande’s Evan Lange and Danny Williams lost to Harrison Kalp and Matthew Wagner from Harvard-Westlake, 6-3, 6-1.
PAC 7 Tournament
Arroyo Grande won with a score of 379 at Blacklake Golf Course in Nipomo, with Righetti coming in second place at 385.
Doug Merrin led the Eagles by shooting a 72, and Mitch Martin was close behind at 74 while Fredrik Stenson shot a 75.
San Luis Obispo, led by Adam Zakaria’s 77, finished third with a score of 404.
Atascadero, which was paced by Randy Armas’ 77, finished fourth.
Nipomo came in third, and Morro Bay finished fourth at par-71 Monarch Dunes.
The Titans (456) edged the Pirates (457) by one stroke.
Cabrillo won the tournament with a score of 434, and Santa Ynez came in second at 445.
Nipomo’s Steve Canales earned medalist honors by shooting a 75 for Nipomo.
Luke Holzschuh shot an 82 for Morro Bay, Doug Chesbro carded an 83 and Carlo Green had a 91 for Morro Bay.