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Mira Costa Is Atop Its Game

November 28, 2001|Mike Haubrich

Sydney Donahue and a gym ceiling proved to be Santa Ana Mater Dei's undoing as Manhattan Beach Mira Costa beat the Monarchs, 19-17, 15-13, 15-13, in a Division II Southern Regional final of the state girls' volleyball playoffs Tuesday at Mater Dei.

Donahue had 22 kills and 25 digs and Jessica Veris had 19 kills and 14 digs for the Mustangs (32-5), who overcame deficits in all three games to advance to the state championship Saturday at Cypress College.

Mater Dei (33-4) led most of the first game and built a 14-11 lead. But the Monarchs failed on 10 game points and Mira Costa eventually took an 18-17 lead. Mater Dei was able to dig Mira Costa's Hilary Stromath kill attempt on game point, but the ball hit the ceiling and the Monarchs were unable to play the carom.

Mater Dei had a 12-10 lead in the second game, but the Mustangs came back for a 14-13 lead. Once again, Mater Dei was able to dig a Mira Costa kill attempt on game point, but the ball ricocheted off the ceiling and the Monarchs couldn't play it.

"To play here is really difficult," Mira Costa Coach DaeLea Aldrich said. "This gym is really closed in."

Mira Costa overcame a 6-0 deficit in the third game to pull out the match.

Breegan Mulligan registered 22 kills and 26 digs and Ashley Bayer and Whitney Pavlik had 28 digs each for Mater Dei.

Mira Costa, which last won a state title in 1989, plays Mountain View St. Francis, a 15-5, 15-6, 15-6 winner Tuesday over Sacramento Rio Americano, Saturday.

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