Posted: Nov 29, 2016
In a CCCAA NorCal playoff match for the ages, the Sierra College volleyball team overcame Sacramento City College 3-2 Saturday night to earn a spot in the CCCAA Women's Volleyball Championship Tournament Dec. 3-4 at LA Pierce College. The epic 31-29, 18-25, 21-25, 25-19, 15-9 thriller was the third win for the 3rd-seeded Wolverines over the Big 8 conference rival and 6th-seeded Panthers this season.
The opening set was a preview of things to come, as Sierra trailed for the majority of the set and then tied it up at 20-20. The teams exchanged side-outs and four set points before an ace and an unforced error won it for the Wolverines. The Panthers looked like they were on their way to the finals after outplaying Sierra in the second and third set to go up 2-1 heading to the fourth. Few in the capacity crowd at Goto/Goldenberg Court felt otherwise.
Enter Ally Wubben.
When asked what changed the momentum and spurred the 25-19 fourth-set win, Sierra head coach Vera Nelson said, "It was the Ally Wubben factor." The All-America setter, who has signed with Cal Poly SLO, took over the match in the fourth set, displaying the All-State and Big 8 MVP skills that produced a staggering 58 assists, 17 digs (many of which came in the 4th), seven kills and a crucial block for the match.
Set five seemed a formality as the Wolverines jumped out to an 8-4 lead at the switch and were never threatened.
Outside hitter Grace Lemmo shook off some early-match jitters to finish with a match-high 21 kills to go along with 15 digs and two aces. Libero Ryan Blackwood had a match-high 37 digs, along with four assists and an ace. Outside hitter Kylie Shinn connected on 17 kills and Stefani Christofferson had 14 kills and 10 digs.
Sierra (22-5) opens the finals as the north's #3 seed and will take on south #2 LA Pierce (28-3) at 1:00pm Saturday (12/3). The winner takes on the winner of south #4 El Camino (23-3) and north #1 Cabrillo (24-2) at 7:00pm. Other day one matches pit S1 Grossmont (26-1) and N4 Gavilan (23-6) at 9:00am and N2 Fresno City (27-1) and S3 Cypress (24-2) and 11:00am.