Match up of volleyball powerhouses goes to Lady Dons

Preseason volleyball rankings had the Cathedral Catholic Lady Dons from Carmel Valley ranked No. 2 and the Bishop’s School Lady Knights from La Jolla ranked No. 5. That changed a few weeks into the non-league season as Cathedral dropped to No. 4 and Bishop’s to No. 8. Last year Cathedral Catholic won the Western League title and the CIF Div. 3 Championship and Bishop’s lost to Santa Fe Christian (eventual Div. 4 Champions) in the semi-finals. The Lady Dons have two projected all-stars in senior Lexi Williamson and junior Kelly Reeves. Bishop’s has projected all-star of its own in Ina Kamenova.

In an early meeting of these county powerhouses on Sept. 17, the Lady Dons easily swept the Lady Knights on their home court three games to none, by the scores of 25-16, 25-14, and 25-15.

“We may have caught Bishop’s on a off day,” said Cathedral Catholic Head Coach Kelly Drobek. “We know Bishop’s is a good team. But, the less errors we make the better we are. We just wanted to play consistently and today we did. Our team is strong again this year and I hope that we can repeat (the championship).”

Before the match, Bishop’s Head Coach Todd Mattox said about the Div. 4 championship, “There will be four teams in the mix; us, Santa Fe Christian, La Jolla Country Day and (Francis) Parker. I think it will be a toss-up who eventually takes the championship.”

In game one with the Lady Knights leading 1-0, Cathedral’s Lexi Williamson had four straight service points including one of her match high four aces. The Lady Dons later stretched it to 21-13, with four kills from Kelly Reeves. Game point came on a Brittany Parnell kill.

Game two started off with Cathedral’s Rachel Oemcke getting four straight service points including one ace, aided by strong Lady Don net play, including three straight blocks by Morgan Cormier and Lexi Williamson. Bishop’s closed the gap to 6-5 with Kendall Lord’s three straight service points including two aces. The Lady Dons pulled away at 13-10 and increased their lead to 17-11 on a monster kill by Williamson. The double-digit victory came on game point, as the Lady Knights couldn’t return Mariah Agre’s service ace.

The third game was the most competitive of the match, with seven ties and eight lead changes. With the score knotted at 10-10, the Lady Dons took control with mistake free play and another monster kill by Williamson. The lead increased to 20-14, with five straight service points by Mariah Agre including thee aces and two straight kills by Kelly Reeves. Thea Derrough stopped the bleeding with a strong kill for Bishop’s, but match point came when a Bishop’s kill went out of bounds.

Leading the way for the Lady Dons was Lexi Williamson with 10 kills, three blocks, 10 service points and four aces. Kelly Reeves also added 10 kills and Rachel Oemcke contributed 31 assists.

For the Lady Knights, Ina Kamenova had 30 assists and one service ace, and Thea Derrough added seven kills.