Crescenta Valley volleyball stays perfect with win over Glendale

LA CRESCENTA — For a moment, albeit a brief one, it looked as if the Crescenta Valley High boys’ volleyball team’s undefeated season and 12-match winning streak were in jeopardy.

Hosting Glendale in a Pacific League match on Wednesday afternoon, the Falcons trailed by seven points midway through the first game, plagued by miscommunication and other miscues.

“I don’t know,” Falcons Coach John Nelson said of the sluggish start. “We were having a hard time getting up to speed.”

Eventually, they caught up enough to sweep the visiting Nitros, 26-24, 25-17, 25-17.

PHOTOS: Crescenta Valley maintains perfect season against Glendale

“We came in to put up a fight,” Glendale Coach Taase Mose said, “but then we couldn’t finish.”

Glendale (2-4, 1-3) took advantage early, grabbing a 2-0 lead immediately off a block from sophomore Hence King. Its lead grew to 11-6 and as much as seven points. In fact, the Nitros never trailed in the opening game until Crescenta Valley senior hitter Henry Sim blocked a spike attempt to knot the score at 19. It capped a five-point rally for the Falcons (13-0, 3-0) in which Sim had three blocks and the serving Min Kim posted two aces.

Later, an ace from junior Barsemian Raymond knotted the score at 24. Raymond, who tallied a team-high five aces, rattled off two more to pull the Falcons ahead to take the first set.

“It was a lack of focus with those last few points,” Mose said, “and then they caught up and we go from there. But they serve pretty tough.”

Crescenta Valley’s momentum carried over into the next frame. Although a service error would hand Glendale a 1-0 advantage, senior Christopher Han’s kill tied the score at 1 and the Falcons never trailed again — in either the second or third game.

“Their offense is fast-paced,” Mose said. “It was hard for us to put up a block most of the time. They’re a really solid team.”

Han posted five kills, while Kim finished with a team-high eight kills and Raymond had seven, all of them coming over the final two sets.

Although unimpressed with the style of play overall, as Crescenta Valley was hampered throughout the contest with errors, Nelson credited his team’s workman-like approach.

“They’re pretty focused,” he said. “They feel like they have something they’re trying to accomplish.”

Arcadia will be the next Pacific League foe to put the Falcons’ winning streak to the test. The Apaches play host Friday night.

“It’s not very often,” Nelson said of the streak. “You win your first game of the year and you’re like ‘Yay, we’re undefeated.’ But they’ve been pretty focused on just winning the next game and now they’ve strung a few of them together and they’re like ‘OK, this is kinda cool.’”

Glendale also hits the road Friday for league play at Burbank.

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