Knights Lose to Irvine Valley in Final Match of Season
The San Diego City College men’s volleyball team fell to Irvine Valley in straight sets at home on Friday afternoon in the final match of the season with set scores of 25-6, 25-8 and 25-16.
Irvine Valley came out on fire and served very effectively. “In the first two sets we had a difficult time passing the ball well," said SDCC Head Coach Kevin Pratte. "When passing breaks down, the offense can not be run effectively."
In set three, Coach Pratte switched Allen Uriarte to outside hitter and his passing improved the performance the Knights' offense. “Before the match, Matt Marinho suffered an injury, so we only had eight players suited up to play," said Pratte. "I admire that our team made no excuses and played extremely hard. It is clear that we never gave up and you can see that in the set three score."
The Knights were without Scott Cayabyab and Matt Marinho due to injuries. “It is difficult to plug in new outside hitters to a lineup," said Pratte. "Playing outside hitter is difficult because you have to serve, pass, attack, block and play defense. Sam [Gerlach] and Allen [Uriarte] did a nice job filling in and it was awesome that our team never game up."
The Knights sent off sophomores Yev Chernish, Ian Leibitzke, Mario Martinez and David Garcia. Chernish will be attending SDCC nursing school next year, Leibitzke was offered a scholarship to play volleyball at Morningside College, Martinez is currently applying to University of San Diego, and Garcia is looking to get into San Diego State University.
“At the end of the match, the officials and the Irvine Valley coaching staff talked with me in great length about how hard our players play," said Pratte. "In many ways this was a difficult season for SDCC, but I truly believe the culture has changed and the players played their hearts out. I enjoyed every minute coaching this team and I wish our sophomores the best of luck in their future endeavors. They know they can always lean on me if they need anything."