Sunset Conference boys’ volleyball coaches were pleased when the CIF Southern Section released the playoff pairings on Friday.
Six of the eight teams in the conference, including all four teams from the Surf League, received a bid into the top division.
Newport Harbor earned the top seed in Division 1 and Corona del Mar the No. 3 seed. The Back Bay rivals shared the Surf League title.
All first-round games will be held Tuesday at 6 p.m.
The Sailors (32-1) will host Palos Verdes (16-13), the third-place team from the Bay League. In the top half of the draw with the Sailors are Laguna Beach (13-13), the fourth-place team from the Surf League, and Wave League co-champion Edison (17-12).
The Breakers, an at-large entry, open at Mission League champion Los Angeles Loyola (19-4). As a league champion, Edison will host its opener, although it will face the No. 4 seed in Redondo Union (26-5), the No. 2 entry from the Bay League.
The bottom half of the Division 1 bracket provides a pair of compelling rematches from the regular season.
The two-time defending Division 1 champion Sea Kings (21-7) will begin their title defense at Marmonte League champion Newbury Park (21-7). In the Best of the West Invitational in San Diego, CdM defeated Newbury Park 22-25, 25-21, 17-15 in the Silver Bracket final on March 9.
“I don’t know what Newbury Park is going to bring at us, but I certainly enjoy entering these rematches coming in as the team that lost the first one, rather than won the first one, motivation-wise,” Stafford said. “There’s always a bit more motivation coming in playing a team that has beaten you a few times.”
The Oilers (24-8), an at-large entry, will travel to take on Trinity League champion Servite (19-11).
Huntington Beach beat Servite 24-26, 26-24, 25-22, 25-17 in a nonleague contest at home on March 5.
“I think that our league, or even our conference, has prepared all six [qualifying] teams from the Sunset Conference, hopefully, to make a push in the playoffs,” Oilers coach Craig Pazanti said. “Playing great teams every night definitely is an advantage.”
Los Alamitos (21-9), which shared the Wave League title with Edison, has a match at Bay League champion Manhattan Beach Mira Costa (19-5), the No. 2 seed.
Ocean View (15-7) notched a dramatic 22-25, 15-25, 25-16, 25-19, 17-15 victory at Godinez in Monday’s Golden West League finale to clinch third place. The reward is a home match against Santa Ana (15-11), the third-place team from Orange Coast League, in the Division 5 wild-card round on Saturday at 5:30 p.m.
The winner will play top-seeded Hemet (25-5), the Mountain Pass League champion, in the first round on Tuesday.
Sage Hill (7-6), the No. 2 team from the San Joaquin League, will host La Quinta (15-4), the Garden Grove League’s No. 2 team, in the first round of the Division 5 playoffs.
Express League champion Brethren Christian (14-12) has a home match against Los Olivos Dunn (6-7), the No. 3 finisher from the Coast Valley League.
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