Last month, the Nipomo High girls volleyball team handed Santa Ynez its first Los Padres League loss in seven years.
Then two weeks later, Templeton High’s team knocked off Nipomo.
On Thursday night, the Eagles doubled up on their big wins and swept Santa Ynez (12-9, 4-2 LPL) to avenge years of defeat.
Templeton (16-9, 6-0) won the match at home 25-23, 25-15, 25-15 to improve upon its undefeated league record and retain sole possession of first place in the LPL.
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“Santa Ynez is a strong team with a great program,” Templeton coach Jodi Kelly said. “They had a seven-year feast in our league. This feels good.”
Kelly applauded her team’s passing success and ability to get sideouts when the Eagles needed them.
Libero Lindsey Wyatt handled several slams off the spikes from Pirates’ players — including self-protective blocks at her head and body — to keep points alive. Wyatt led Templeton with 22 digs.
Sydney Roth was in the heart of the action as well, varying her sets from the middle to the outside to disguise the Eagles offense.
The kill tally was spread primarily amongst five players — Heather Fields (12), Mari Stewart and Carly Roth (8 each), Lucy Portillo and Autumn Russell (7 each). Sydney Roth finished with 36 assists.
“We expected a fight from them and we had to work hard,” Sydney Roth said. “It was a struggle.”
After a first set tie at 22, Templeton pulled ahead on kills by Fields and Russell.
Then at 24-23, Roth closed out the game with a fake-out set that surprised the Pirates players who scrambled for the ball to no avail.
In the second set, Sydney Roth took control on her serve, firing off seven consecutive balls from behind the line, mixing floater knuckleballs with top-spin, diving shots. To open the third, she had six consecutive serves.
“I was really focusing on really trying to place the ball in certain spots to take advantage of their positioning,” Roth said.
The Eagles were able to pull away on key runs in the latter sets.
In the second, the Eagles pulled away from a 10-10 tie to snag a 16-10 lead off booming kills by Stewart and Fields and maintained the lead the rest of the way.
In the third set, Templeton jumped out to a 6-0 lead, and benefited from a one-point violation assessed against Santa Ynez coach Chip Fenenga to go up 7-1.
Fenenga had argued violation calls by the referees against his team and continued to complain after being warned.
Carly Roth said that Templeton is playing confidently and the big win will help build on its success.
“This win will motivate us to work that much harder,” Carly Roth said.
Standing alongside her cousin, Sydney Roth said the team’s goal is to go undefeated in league.
“That’s our goal and we know it will be tough,” Roth said. “We’ll work really hard.”