Volleyball Wilson

CIF Volleyball: Wilson Dominates With Sweep of El Segundo

So far, so perfect for the Wilson boys’ volleyball team.

The team has played nine matches so far this season, including Tuesday evening’s first-round CIF Southern Section Division 3 playoff tilt with visiting El Segundo. As of now, the Bruins have still yet to lose a set as they kept their undefeated season going with an easy 25-18, 25-11, 25-14 victory.

“Our guys have big ambition, so they’re not happy yet,” said Wilson coach Jeremy Cook. “They were really confident going into this, and I think they’re confident going into the second round as well. I’m happy with how it went but not surprised.”

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Cook admitted he had some anxiety about the playoffs starting when he said his team had really only been tested four times in the regular season, against Poly and Millikan. But his team’s pace and athleticism were too much for the visitors on Tuesday, as a balanced Bruin attack saw Fletcher Garrett, Leo Pravednikov, and Payne Lounsbery each had 11 kills. Setter Bryce Lowery kept El Segundo on their heels by spreading the ball around at pace.

“We don’t have a lot of tests under our belts and the teams are going to get better from here on out, but I liked the fact that we were playing fast,” said Cook. 

His team continued its strong service attack as well, with 16 aces including five from Pravednikov and four from Garrett, as well as three from Braden Pool-Harris and two apiece from Lowery and Lounsbery.

“We’ve worked really hard in such little time for this,” said Garrett. “I think in the first set you could see that the nerves were there. But after that we calmed everyone down. I think in the second and third set we realized this is our game to win and balled out.”

After a relatively tight first set that saw Wilson lead just 18-15 before pulling away, the Bruins left no doubt in the second and third set.

“It wasn’t perfect,” said Cook. “I felt like we gave them too many points on hitting errors.”

Wilson (9-0) will travel to the winner of Windward and Simi Valley for a second-round match on Thursday afternoon.

VIDEO: Wilson vs. El Segundo CIF Volleyball

PHOTOS: Wilson vs. El Segundo, CIF Volleyball

Mike Guardabascio
An LBC native, Mike Guardabascio has been covering Long Beach sports professionally for 13 years, with his work published in dozens of Southern California magazines and newspapers. He's won numerous awards for his writing as well as the CIF Southern Section’s Champion For Character Award, and is the author of three books about Long Beach history.