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Long Beach Poly Millikan Volleyball

Volleyball: Long Beach Poly Sweeps Millikan on Senior Night, Sets Up Title Match

The562’s coverage of high school volleyball in 2023 is brought to you by the MLP’s Bay Area Breakers.

The562’s coverage of Long Beach Poly is sponsored by Bryson Financial.

The562’s coverage of Millikan athletics in the 2023-24 school year is sponsored by Curtis Boyer.

Long Beach Poly (20-6, 10-0) picked up a dominant win over Millikan on the Jackrabbits’ senior night, setting up a Moore League title tilt next week when Poly visits second-place Wilson on Tuesday. The Jackrabbits led wire-to-wire in a win over the Rams, 25-11, 25-12, 25-10.

The senior night celebration for the Jackrabbits went on for a solid hour after the match, as they celebrated libero Taylor Mercado, outside hitter Cynthia Hinojosa, Kalia Teofilo, and Josephine Gore. Hinojosa led the way with 11 kills, 10 digs, four aces and a block. She said it’s been amazing being a part of the turnaround at Poly, where the team went 11-17 last year and finished fourth place in the league.

“I’m feeling great, making more memories with the other seniors, the underclassmen, it’s unforgettable,” she said.

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Poly’s senior night celebration highlighted the culture turnaround the Jackrabbits have enjoyed. Each of the four seniors was celebrated with gifts, but also stood and listened to heartfelt letters from underclassmen. Many tears were shed, but that bond and togetherness have been a big part of why the team has had such success this year–they’re ranked No. 3 in the CIF-SS Division 3 poll.

“It feels amazing, leaning on each other and working as a whole,” said Hinojosa. “It feels like we’re coming together and just going forward this year.”

It was a tough night for Millikan as the Rams were without star player Elle Lundahl, who head coach Ashleigh Atsaros said was injured in practice the day before the match. The Rams have a chance at third place in the Moore League if they can beat Lakewood next week.

Meanwhile, Poly will travel to Wilson Tuesday at 530pm. If the Jackrabbits win they’d be sole Moore League champions–if Wilson wins, the two teams would likely tie for the championship presuming they both win their other matches next week. In the event of a tie they’d be crowned co-league champions and both go into their respective CIF-SS divisions as the top team out of the league (since they’re in different divisions).

PHOTOS: Long Beach Poly vs Millikan 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.