Playing as if it were the state championship, Flintridge Sacred Heart's Katie Condon approached each summer league volleyball game at Pasadena Poly with a competitive drive and as vocal team leader.
Last week was no different, as Condon put on her game face in a midsummer match-up between the Tologs and Maranatha High School on July 26, as the Tologs swept the Lady Minutemen in two games, 25-16 and 25-9.
Maranatha started off with an early 5-3 lead. Under the service of Camille Coffey, the Tologs scored seven unanswered points, including several digs by Coffey and spikes by Condon, as FSHA took a 10-5 lead.
As if on cue, the Maranatha "cheering section" arrived â€” a group of eight males from Maranatha High, with face and body paint and a school flag â€” creating a playoff-type atmosphere.
Inspired, the Lady Minutemen responded back to cut the Tologs' lead to 12-10.
Of course, Condon took it upon herself to inspire her own team.
With the Tologs holding on to a slim 16-14 lead, Condon stepped up, giving high fives and pats on shoulders after each play.
Under her leadership and the service of Adriana Hoang, the Tologs played collectively to take over the game and extend their lead to a first match victory, 25-16.
The cheering Minutemen did not help their team on the floor as the Tologs started out the second game with a quick 4-0 lead.
After Condon made two killer spikes to extend the Tologs lead to 7-1, the cheering crew grew restless and frustrated.
The frustration appeared to extend to the game itself, as the Lady Minutemen frontline could not get in front of any Tologs' spikes, while the outside hitters could not react in time with digs or bumps.
With FSHA leading 11-2, Coach Shelli Ovlandini gave Condon her first rest since the Valley Sun began covering this summer league, but her teammates did not let her down. Coffey and Ali Marick led the way in Condon's absence, with several blocks and spikes on the frontline, as the Tologs blew away the Lady Minutemen, 25-9, to complete the two-game sweep.
After the game versus Maranatha was complete, summer league and school officials did not allow FSHA to continue playing into a next game, primarily due to injuries.
"We don't want to lose any more hitters," Condon said, agreeing with the ruling. "Our middle hitter got injured last week, and we lost another girl today."
The summer season is over and the team will resume practice at the end of August.