Fresh off their first CIF-SS title in program history, the Long Beach Wilson boys’ volleyball team didn’t have much time to celebrate as they were back in action on Tuesday for the first round of the CIF SoCal Division 2 Regional playoffs.
Taking on Buchanan, the CIF Central Section Division 1 runner-up, the Bruins remained undefeated as they swept the Bears 25-16, 25-18, 25-14.
With the school year wrapping up and coming off the high of winning a championship on Saturday, Wilson coach Jeremy Cook said things were a little different preparing this week.
“It was hard,” Cook said. “Yesterday we had four guys taking AP classes and something just felt a little off. But I guess we’ve played enough volleyball at this point and we were ready to go.”
After jumping to a 4-0 in the first set, Donovan Constable and Buchanan fought back into the match as they forced an 11-11 tie.
Leo Pravednikov and Payne Lounsbery got the Bruins back in control as they took and 18-14 lead on their way to the first set victory.
The Bears continued to put up a fight in the second set that had 12 ties before Pravednikov had three kills and one block as the Bruins pulled away for the 25-18 victory.
“We heard the brackets came out on Sunday,” Pravednikov said. “So we only had two days to prepare, two days to get in the right mindset. Today was a big day for us, getting here early and just bonding. We took advantage of being home and getting our reps together.”
After being tied 1-1 in the third set, Wilson led the rest of the way as they took a commanding 25-14.
Freshman Ian Nolte was stellar at the net setting a season record for the Bruins with ten blocks.
“We were mentally prepared for today,” Nolte said. “They had a long drive and we just took it after the first set.”
The Bruins will now travel to San Diego to face No. 1-seed Torrey Pines on Thursday at 6 p.m.