Madera holds off young Hawks


Tyler Takeda/The Madera Tribune

Madera’s Rae Jackson rises up for one of her 12 kills during Thursday’s four-set victory over the Liberty Hawks. Jackson had six kills in a second set victory.

The Madera Coyotes girls volleyball team’s two hitters were better than the Liberty Hawks’ top three hitters in a four-set non-league victory at Liberty.


Zariah Bryant and Rae Jackson combined for 22 of Madera’s 34 kills to lead the Coyotes to a 25-20, 25-21, 14-25, 25-21 win Thursday night.


“Once the girls got comfortable, it’s good,” Madera head coach Meghan Haas said. “It just takes them a long time to get to that point. Against Liberty, we saw them get comfortable in their role. They got confidence and they played that way.”


The Hawks got contributions from Karsyn Bauer, Emily Boatwright and Mariah Medina, but it was not enough. The trio combined for 22 of Liberty’s 30 kills (73 percent).


“If we would have played how we played the third and the fourth set, we could have beaten Madera. We just didn’t come out very clean, at all,” Liberty head coach Grant Clark said.


Both teams also had their successes and failures at the service line. Madera served up 12 aces, led by Sofia Marin’s six, but also had 12 service errors. Meanwhile, the Hawks had 15 aces with three each from Taylor Toschi, Allyx Faretta and Rylee Bocchini, but also had seven missed serves.


“We were going through the motions. Nothing was clicking,” Clark said.


Madera jumped out to the early lead in the first set. A pair of aces from Emma Richardson and kills from Emily Lopez and Bryant led to a 7-1 lead.


Toschi got a kill off a bump on a serve for the point while Faretta served up an ace to cut the lead to three.


Lopez put down another kill for the Coyotes for a 9-4 lead. Bauer, who had eight kills, put one down for a side out.


After a Liberty missed serve, Richardson found the back corner with a dump kill for a 12-7 lead.


After a Madera missed serve, Mariah Medina served up an ace as the Hawks cut the lead down to three.


Bauer put down a side out kill and Toschi served up a point while the Hawks cut the lead down to one. Madera got a side out kill from Bryant, who had 10 kills, and another from libero Marin to open a 17-15 lead.


Faretta served up an ace to get the lead down to three. A Madera missed serve led to a Bauer ace.


However, Jackson, who had a match-high 12 kills, tipped a kill for the side out. Marin served up an ace for a 20-16 lead.


Medina put down a side out kill and Bocchini served up a point to cut the lead to three. Bocchini added an ace and a diving one-handed dig that fell for a kill to help Liberty tie the set at 20.


However, the Coyotes got the serve back and Erika Perez finished the set with four straight points, including an ace for a 25-20 victory.


The teams played it closer in the second set. Madera took a little control after a pair of aces from Richardson. Bryant served up an ace and Jackson put down a kill to extend Madera’s lead to 10-5.


Medina got a side out kill and served up a point. However, a Liberty net violation and a lift call gave the Coyotes their five-point lead back.


Boatwright recorded a bump kill for a side out and Jianna Montemayor served an ace to cut the lead to three.


However, a missed serve led to a Jackson ace. A Madera missed serve led to a five-point Liberty run to tie the set. In the run, Kassidy Afonin recorded a bump kill as the teams tied at 14.


Madera got the side out and a Bryant kill for a 17-14 lead. A pair of Madera Service errors helped the Hawks score four straight points for a 19-18 lead.


However, Madera closed the set by scoring seven of the last nine points.


Madera got the side out to tie the set at 19 and then got back-to-back kills from Jackson. A missed serve gave the Hawks the side out, but another Jackson kill gave the serve back to the Coyotes. Jackson added another kill as Madera got to set point.


Boatwright put down a side out kill to hold off the Coyotes’ set win, but Jackson tipped down a kill for a 25-21 win.


In the third set, the Hawks started to show signs of life. Medina put down three kills while the Hawks jumped to a 6-3 lead. Side out kills from Kylie Bursey, Jackson and Bryant (twice) kept the Coyotes in the set.


A push kill from Jamie Avellaneda gave the Hawks a 9-5 lead.


Boatwright put down a side out kill and added another during a four-point run. Montemayor served up an ace and recorded a bump kill for a 14-6 Liberty lead.


Bryant put down a kill for the Coyotes, but Bocchini got a back row kill off an assist from libero Faretta for the side out. Toschi served up an ace for a 17-8 Liberty lead.


After three straight side outs, Madera tried to get back into the set with a Bryant ace and a Jackson kill.


However, a Madera missed serve led to a three-point Liberty run. Avellaneda served up an ace for a 21-13 lead.


Jackson put down a side out kill for Madera, but Medina answered with one for the Hawks. Bocchini went back to serve and took the Hawks to the set win. Montemayor had another dump kill and Bocchini closed the set with an ace for a 25-14 Liberty win.


In the fourth set, Madera took control with two aces from Marin. The Hawks got an ace from Avellaneda and Madera hit out of bounds for a 7-5 lead.


The Coyotes tied the set with a Perez ace.


Bryant put down a side out kill for a 10-9 lead. Morgan Burns served up an ace, Richardson got a dump kill and Bryant put down a kill off the block for a 13-9 lead.


After a trade in side outs, Marin served up two aces in a five-point run for a 19-10 lead.


Liberty added two points before a Perez bump kill. Richardson added an ace for a 21-12 lead.


Medina got a side out kill and a solo block while Bocchini added an ace to cut Madera’s lead to six.


Jackson put down a side out kill, but Madera gave the serve back. Medina served up a point and the Hawks trailed by five.


Bursey put down a kill for the side out and match point.


Bauer held off ending the match with three straight kills. However, Bursey ended the match with a kill to the back corner for a 25-21 win.

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