Coming off a recent five-game loss to Mater Dei, defending State Division I champion El Toro played with determination Thursday in a 15-11, 15-12, 12-15, 12-15, 16-14 South Coast League victory over host Dana Hills.
"They had something to prove after dropping the last game (against Mater Dei), 15-1," Dana Hills Coach Mike Hurlbut said. "(We were) two pretty well-matched teams . . . we gave them a run for their money, but they came out on top."
The Chargers (3-2, 1-1), ranked fifth in the county, were effective in putting the ball away and running the middle well, primarily because of the leadership of junior setter Analisa Saylor. Saylor, despite a bad back and a sprained wrist, covered the court well and finished with 66 set assists. Senior outside hitter Tishara Jespersen had 16 kills for El Toro.
"They (Dana Hills) dug lots of balls and played with unending spirit," El Toro Coach Scott Terry said. "(This victory) got rid of the monkey on our back."
Despite the 2-0 game deficit, No. 8 Dana Hills (7-1, 1-1), kept pressure on El Toro throughout. The Dolphins had 16 aces and only 10 service errors. Jeanne Vetter led the Dolphins with 21 kills. Senior captain Lori Bowers added 17.