Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Madera South setter Sebastian Moreno reaches high to help keep the Stallions’ offense running during a three-set sweep of the Bullard Knights on Tuesday.
Sitting at 31-10 overall and 5-1 in the County/Metro Athletic Conference, the Madera South boys volleyball team is primed for a run at another league title.
Not only did the Stallions get their 30th win of the season — the most wins of anyone in Division II — but they also avenged their only loss in the CMAC with a confident performance.
Madera South beat the Bullard-Fresno Knights
25-22, 25-16 and 25-18. The Stallions relied on what has made them successful all season, team work.
The Stallions have players than can stand out on any given night such, but against a strong team, Madera South dug deep for the league win.
Jared Guglielmana was on top of his game for the Stallions. His athletic ability, combined with his skillset, gives Madera South a leader on the court.
The Stallions’ libero Joseph Chavez proved to be an anchor on the defensive side. His ability to receive serves and keep the ball within bounds and accurately feed the ball to his setter allowed Guglielmana, Christian Sylvia and others to take advantage up front. Chavez had 22 digs in the match.
Madera South and Bullard came out fighting in the first set. The Knights battled with the home team but couldn’t find an edge.
The Stallions responded to the Knights’ challenge with a gritty 25-22 win to open the contest. Madera South buckled down in the final moments to weather the Knights’ comeback attempt.
Riley Maciel and Sylvia had a connection throughout the night. Maciel would set the ball and Sylvia would come crashing down like a hammer.
Sylvia finished the game with 12 kills, while Guglielmana chipped in seven. His power at the net proved costly for the visitors after his athleticism peaked in the final set with a devastating kill to win the matchup.
Despite the Knights record of 26-7, Madera South was more than ready to take the Knights head on.
After a 25-22 first set, Madera South put a stranglehold on the game.
In set two, Madera South took its momentum the first set and translated that into a nine-point win in set two.
All season, the Stallions have gotten stronger as each set progressed, and Tuesday, against Bullard, was no different.
In set two, Guglielmana and Sylvia powered Madera South. Their knack for finding spaces in the opponent court provided dividends with multiple kills for each.
While the kill shots might provide the excitement from the fans, the defensive play from Chavez, Adrian Alvarez and Sebastian Moreno, among others, proved to be the deciding factor. Moreno finished the game with 23 assists.
The last time Bullard and Madera South faced off, the Knights ran away with a 3-1 result, but the Stallions had the Knights’ number this day.
In set three, more of the same for Madera South. The Stallions held a lead throughout the final set, culminating in a final kill for Sylvia. His last point was more of an exclamation point.