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GIRLS' VOLLEYBALL / SOUTHERN SECTION CHAMPIONSHIPS
| DIVISION III-AA

This Time, Slow Start Proves Costly for Ocean View

November 22, 1998|MARTIN BECK | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Ocean View has made a habit of overcoming sluggish starts and pulling out victories in the Southern Section girls' volleyball playoffs this season, but in the Division III-AA final Saturday, top-seeded Torrance Bishop Montgomery put an end to that trend.

By the time the third-seeded Seahawks got their act together, Bishop Montgomery was polishing them off, 15-3, 15-13, 15-9, at Cypress College and winning its fourth section title of the decade.

"For some reason in the playoffs we have started off kind of slowly," Ocean View Coach Tim Mennealy said. "Fortunately up until now we were able to overcome that flat spot. This time we were playing a better team and it caught up with us."

Last season, Ocean View defeated Bishop Montgomery in five close games for the Division III-A title and the Knights were looking for payback. "Definitely, we wanted revenge," senior outside hitter Hedder Ilustre said.

It happened more quickly than they expected. The Knights (24-6) took less than 15 minutes to win the first game, and a bit more than an hour to finish off the match. Katie Olsovsky, a 6-foot-2 middle blocker, played a dominant role. She had nine of her match-high 19 kills in the second game and also finished with nine blocks.

Ocean View (16-3) finally started making it competitive in Game 2, cutting a 13-6 deficit to 13-10. Bishop Montgomery then made it 14-10 on a disputed play. Seahawk middle blocker Jessica Bradosky hit a spike that flew long but Ocean View argued that the ball was tipped by a Knight blocker.

The Seahawks got mad, then fought off three game points and cut the deficit to 14-13 before they were called for going under the net on the fourth game point.

Tracy Lindquist, Ocean View's senior setter, said her team was fired up by the "bad call."

"It kind of helped us get going," Lindquist said.

By that time, however, it was too late despite the play of Lindquist, middle blocker Carissa Gough (13 kills) and Bradosky (nine kills).

After the Seahawks managed a 6-5 lead in Game 3, the Knights ran off the next seven points, four on Ocean View errors or violations, for a 12-6 lead. Ocean View made a final push, scoring three points, two on kills by Lindquist, but then Olsovsky took over again with kills on two of the final three points for the Knights.

Now Ocean View will regroup for the state playoffs, which begin Tuesday. Mennealy is hoping for a fresh start.

"For some reason I think this team doesn't rise to the occasion right away," he said. "I don't think there's anyone on our team who doesn't think we could have played better volleyball than we played today."

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