In its 11th game of the season on Monday, the Del Norte volleyball team finally got a chance to play in front of its home fans in Thunen Gymnasium, and the Warriors took advantage of the opportunity with a dominating 3-0 (25-8, 25-11, 25-18) victory over Brookings-Harbor.
“We kept playing our ball the whole game,” said Del Norte head coach Debbie Lorenzi. “We did a good job of staying at Del Norte’s level.”
The Warriors jumped out to an early 9-2 lead in the first set against Brookings and never looked back, leading for virtually the entire match.
In the third match Del Norte started to substitute players liberally, allowing everyone to get some playing time. Although the third set was a little bit closer than the other two, Lorenzi said she was excited about the production she got off the bench against Brookings.
“All of the people that went in did a good job,” Lorenzi said. “It is nice to know that you can just throw in your bench and they can keep the momentum going. In volleyball that is not the easiest thing to do because volleyball is all about communication, and when you are used to communicating with certain people it can throw things off a lot when new players come in. This team doesn’t seem to mind it at all.”
Senior libero Antonia Alcala led Del Norte with nine digs in the match.
Claire Smith lead the Warrior attack with 11 kills. Kaleya Sanchez added nine kills and Taylor Melton chipped in five kills for Del Norte.
Monday’s home opener came on the heels of a weekend full of tough competition in Marshfield on Saturday.
“It was the best play that we have seen this year,” Lorenzi said of the round robin in Marshfield. “The rallies lasted forever. Our game against Southern went four games and it took an hour and 45 minutes. That was a good game.”
Del Norte opened up the round robin with a 3-1 victory over Southern. Prior to Saturday the Warriors hadn’t lost a single set through its first seven games. The Warriors followed that up with a 3-0 sweep of Douglas in the second match.
“They weren’t quite as good as Southern, but we still had to play,” Lorenzi said. “We actually fell behind in that match but we came back and won.”
The weekend finale turned out to be the Warriors’ first loss of the year as they fell 3-1 to Marshfield.
“We took the first set, and psychologically I thought we were done after that,” Lorenzi said. “After a three-hour drive in the morning, we weren’t doing too well by that time at night. We still struggled though. We kept the rallies going and made them earn every bit of it. We just couldn’t pull the win out.”
After Monday’s win, the Warriors are 10-1 overall. Del Norte will be back in action on Friday in Anderson for the first day of a two-day tournament.