The562’s coverage of Long Beach Volleyball in the 2022-23 school year is sponsored by Misty May-Treanor and the Dream in Gold Foundation.
The562’s coverage of Long Beach Wilson Athletics is sponsored by Joel Bitonio, Class of 2009.
The562’s coverage of Long Beach Poly athletics in the 2022-23 school year is sponsored by Poly alum Jayon Brown and PlayFair Sports Management.
The Wilson girls’ volleyball team has been working on methods to regain and maintain focus whether they are up or down against opponents. So, when the Bruins dropped their first set to Long Beach Poly Tuesday night, they didn’t stress or back down.
“Even though this is our home court it was just a little off,” Allanah Smith said after Wilson dropped their first set 25-19. “We just had to lean back, take deep breaths – we did a lot of breath work after that first set, so after that we kind of calmed down.”
Smith and Chloe Pravendikov led the charge as the Bruins came back to defeat Poly 19-25, 25-16, 25-22, 25-17 to remain undefeated to set up a huge Moore League showdown Wednesday as Wilson is on the road to take on Lakewood in a first-place battle of Moore League unbeatens.
The Bruins gained momentum in the second set after a 6-0 run put the Bruins up 9-3. Wilson would lead the rest of the way as they tied the match 1-1.
Poly continued to fight in the third set as Halie McGinest and Saniya Kimbrough took turns coming up with big hits as the Jackrabbits took a 20-16 lead.
After going back and forth with five ties, Wilson took a 2-1 lead after a 25-22 win. Smith led the way for the Bruins with 15 kills, five digs, two aces and two blocks. The junior came up big whether it was from the back row or outside to come up with big hits when the Bruins needed it.
“I love coming down from the net after getting a point and looking at the setter like ‘you just set that and we just did that,'” Smith said. “The excitement is just so much and I love to express that and let them know that they just did that.”
In the third set, Wilson never trailed and had a 19-10 lead late as the Bruins took control of the match.
For the Jackrabbits, McGinest finished with 10 kills.
It’s been a learning opportunity for the Poly program after going through some adversity this season as they grow as a team.
“Resiliency is definitely something we’re trying to build,” Poly coach Megan Moenoa said. “We’re not there yet, we kind of give up and go in spurts. So, we’re still trying to work through that.”