La Jolla Country Day captures state volleyball title

Torreys secure Div. IV crown, capping nearly perfect season

La Jolla Country Day has its section title, and can now add a state championship to its long list of accomplishments in a truly remarkable season.

The Torreys captured their first CIF State Division IV title on Dec. 5, beating Christian Brothers of Sacramento, 25-19, 25-20, 25-17, at UC Irvine and putting an exclamation point on a season that included 35 wins and just one loss.

“One of my players suggested that if we split this team up, we’d probably still have two very good teams,” Country Day coach Peter Ogle said. “I think she’s right.”

The state title was the first for Country Day in the school’s first championship game appearance. It was also the first title for any school from La Jolla.

Lauren Birks paced the Torreys in the title game with 12 kills, and was named the championship game’s MVP. Mollie Rogers had 14 digs and seven kills, and Chloe Mathis added 15 assists.

Country Day advanced to the state championship game by defeating city rival Bishop’s, 25-17, 18-25, 25-22, 25-22, in the Southern California regional final in its home gym Dec. 1.

The regional final was a rematch of last month’s CIF San Diego Section Division IV championship game and marked the fourth time in as many tries that the Torreys beat the Knights this year.

Rogers paced Country Day with 15 kills in the win over Bishop’s. Teammate Jessie Altman contributed 17 assists, and Cheyenne Giesecke added 11 digs.

Kristen Casey’s 15 kills led Bishop’s, Ina Kamenova totaled 41 assists, three aces, three blocks and 10 digs, Savannah Smith had six kills, and Kelly McPherson added three aces and seven digs.

“I was proud of our group,” Bishop’s coach Tod Mattox said. “We finished the season 30-9, and our schedule was a challenging one.”

Gregory Ball covers sports for La Jolla Light. He can be reached at ballgregory@yahoo. com.