Briefs: Balboa 14s win gold at Junior National tourney

Trent Jackson only had enough time to answer his phone before his plane took off from Dallas on Thursday night.

The coach and players from his boys' team, the Balboa Bay Volleyball Club 14 Hurley, couldn't talk.

It was understandable, and they really didn't have to say much, anyway.

That's because Balboa Bay let its play do the talking at the USA Volleyball Junior National Championships by winning the gold medal in the 14-year-old open division in Dallas.

Balboa Bay claimed the title after sweeping Pacific Palisades Quiksilver, 25-19, 25-18, in the best-of-three format.

Of the 11 matches played during the four-day tournament, Balboa Bay won nine. Each time it prevailed in two sets.

Balboa Bay played three matches on Monday, the first two against Pacific Rim of Pleasant Hill and 949 Black of San Clemente.

Balboa Bay's team was comprised of Cole Pender, Paul Castellana, Colin McCallister, Jake Pearson, Garrett White, Chase Moothart, Matt Kormeluk, Sam Kobrine, William Hunter, Steven Guder and Mika Grasso.

The team was coached by Jackson, who also guides the Edison High boys' and girls' volleyball teams, Craig Moothart, a former pro who's from Costa Mesa, Matthew Skolnik, a former Orange Coast College player, and Rusty Sary, a former Newport Harbor High standout who played at OCC.

The Balboa Bay 18 Hurley team finished fifth in its open division age group.

Recent Corona del Mar graduates Parker Brown, Joe Ctvrtlik and Jack Reed played on the team, which went 6-3 during the tournament.

The Balboa Bay 18 White team placed 13th. Newport Harbor's Griffin Leggett and Chris Sheppard were on the team.

Balboa Bay has its 15, 16 and 17 Hurley teams and 17 White team still competing in their respective open division age groups in Dallas.

— From staff reports

Stalder, Gordon win tournament

Incoming Newport Harbor High sophomore Reese Stalder and Corona del Mar resident Henry Gordon had a Fourth of July to remember.

Stalder and Gordon won the boys' 16 doubles title at a United States Tennis Assn. National Open tournament in Lakewood.

They defeated William Chiu of San Diego and Michael Genender of Los Angeles, 8-1 in a pro set, in the final at Lakewood Tennis Center. Previously, Stalder and Gordon had upset top-seeded Steven Chen of San Diego and Michael Nguyen of San Jose, 8-3, in the quarterfinals. They also beat Trevor Johnson of Las Vegas and Creel Smith of Wyoming, 8-4, in the semifinals of the Level 2 tournament.

Stalder and Gordon have been playing well lately. Last month, they were unseeded but advanced to the quarterfinals of the Southern California Junior Sectionals before losing to the top-seeded team.

Gordon played for CdM as a freshman. He and his family are in the process of moving to Texas, where Gordon will train at the John Newcombe Tennis Academy.

— Matt Szabo

Tstreet in semifinals

Local outside hitters Hayley Hodson and Alexis Cage have helped the Tstreet Volleyball Club 17 open division girls' volleyball team advance to the gold bracket semifinals at the USA Volleyball Junior National Championships in Columbus, Ohio.

Hodson is an incoming sophomore at Corona del Mar High, where she helped the Sea Kings reach the CIF Southern Section Division I-A title match last fall. Cage, a University of Washington commit, is a Newport Beach resident who elected not to play for CdM last fall during her junior year.

They have helped Tstreet, coached by Troy Tanner, go 8-1 in its first nine matches at Junior Nationals. Tstreet plays Texas Advantage Volleyball Club in a gold bracket semifinal Friday morning at 8 a.m. local time. The championship match follows at noon local time.

The one team that beat Tstreet so far, Orange County Blue, plays 1st Alliance Volleyball Club of Illinois in a bronze bracket semifinal match Friday morning. Orange County, which features Newport Harbor's Carolyn Bockrath, Torey Thompson, Tristen Thompson and Hunter Jennings, as well as Corona del Mar's Grace Kennedy and Shannon Griffin, has gone 6-2 so far at Junior Nationals.

— From staff reports

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