Stallions open playoffs with big performance
Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune Madera South’s Carlos Hernandez reaches high for a kill during a 3-1 playoff victory over Clovis East on Thursday.
After a first-round bye opened the playoffs, the Madera South boys volleyball team picked up where they left off and dominated the pesky Clovis East Timberwolves for a 3-1 win in the quarterfinals of the Div. I playoffs.
Led by captain Rigo Pineda, Javier Gil and Carlos Hernandez, the No. 3 Stallions powered their way to 25-17, 25-23 and 25-22 victories. With a combination of powerful kills and courageous rallies, the County/Metro Athletic Conference champions moved on to the semifinal round of the CIF playoffs at No. 2 Buchanan-Clovis on Tuesday.
The Stallions opened their match with a six-point lead in the first set.
Pineda pushed the lead to nine after a well-placed serve. Arreguin followed up with a kill into the away team’s back row.
The lead ballooned to 10 after Abraham Alapizco tipped the ball over the net.
After an intense rally, Pineda rose over the net for the devastating kill, which brought the Stallion faithful to their feet while also pushing the lead back to double digits.
Gil contributed to the team after he out jumped his opponent and smashed a ball into center court for the point.
After Hernandez rose to meet his opponent at the net, he blocked a Timberwolves’ spike to win the set 25-17.
The Stallions began the second game on a tear after Gil and Hernandez combined to score consecutive points for the home team.
After three quick points, the Stallions allowed back-to-back scores to let the Timberwolves in the game, 3-2.
The Timberwolves took the lead two scores later after the opposing front line stifled the Stallions with consecutive tough challenges.
After consecutive net violations, the Stallions found themselves trailing, 7-3.
After a timeout by Madera South head coach Steve Guglielmana, the Stallions rebounded after Gil sent a shot past the Timberwolves player for an easy point.
The Stallions seized on the turn of events and capitalized on a 7-2 run to take the lead after a Timberwolves shot misfired. The Stallions crowd rose to its feet after taking a 10-9 lead.
The action picked up after the Stallions endured a tough rally to finish the Timberwolves off with a kill by Hernandez.
The Stallions scored consecutive points after the Timberwolves sent the ball out of bounds for a 21-19 lead.
Arreguin followed up with a kill after he flew from the right side for the point.
After an intense rally, Gil finished off the opposing team with a powerful shot into the back row.
The Timberwolves fought their way back in the third set winning, 25-21.
The Stallions were on the wrong foot most of the set. Although they scored five points in a row and clawed their way back, they couldn’t muster enough at the end to take the match.
The fourth game began in favor of the Timberwolves after they scored four straight points.
The Stallions battled back with three straight scores, highlighted by Hernandez’s monster block and score. Once down by seven, the Stallions trailed by one.
Gil gave the Stallions a huge one-point lead after a kill.
The game tightened after the Timberwolves tied the game at 19-19.
Gil came up huge for the Stallions, once again, with a timely kill that gave the Stallions a lead.
Gil put down consecutive kills to close the set. His precision and leaping ability proved to be too much after he led the Stallions on three-point run to push the lead 24-22.
The Stallions advanced on a deflected set that went awry for the Timberwolves.