The Del Norte volleyball team was on the road, facing Fortuna for the first time this season. Although the Warriors got off to a slow start in the match and dropped the first set, Del Norte bounced back with lopsided wins in the next two sets, and held on late in the fourth set for a 3-1 (23-25, 25-12, 25-10, 25-21) victory.
“It was definitely a good night,” said Del Norte head coach Sarah Levi. “I think we played pretty decent. We didn’t play as well as I wanted, at least in the first game, but we definitely picked it up.”
Levi said the Warriors passing was rough and the team’s hitting was too inconsistent in the first set in Fortuna, and the Huskies managed to pull out a close 25-23 win.
In the second and third set, Del Norte dominated play with set wins by 13 and 15 points.
“They came out and played more aggressively, and they took more control over our side of the court,” Levi said. “I thought we were kind of frantic in the first set. We were able to get a pretty decent lead early in both the second and third set and kind of ran away with it. We were very well rounded in the second and third games. We played well defensively and our offense was strong.”
Del Norte jumped out to a 21-17 lead in the fourth set before the Huskies were able to put together a run to make it close. Levi said the Warriors eventually settled down and pulled out a 25-21 victory to wrap up the match.
Senior Kaleya Sanchez led Del Norte offensively with 12 kills. Senior Paula Mello added six kills for the Warriors while sophomore setter Bella Stone chipped in with five kills.
Sophomore Caroline Hamm picked up a team-high three blocks against Fortuna, while sophomore Renni Loftin was the Warriors’ top server in the match with six aces.
With the win Del Norte improves to 3-2 in Humboldt-Del Norte Big 5 League games this year, keeping the Warriors half a game ahead of Arcata, which improved to 3-3 with a 3-2 win over Eureka on Tuesday.
Del Norte will be back in action on Thursday in Arcata in a battle for second place in the league standings. The Warriors topped the Tigers 3-0 when the teams met in Crescent City in September, but Arcata has won three league games in a row since then while handing the first place Loggers their first Big 5 loss.
The Warriors game in Arcata is scheduled to tip off at about 6:30 p.m., following the conclusion of the junior varsity match.