Backed by its spirited student cheering section, Central Valley High School's varsity volleyball squad earned crosstown bragging rights Wednesday night with a 3-1 (20-25, 25-18, 25-16, 25-12) win over visiting Ceres High.
"We had motivation from our crowd and we knew we were better than them," Hawk senior Mia Lorenzo said. "We wanted to show our town who's in charge. We're a much better team than before."
Central Valley improved to 2-3 in the Western Athletic Conference.
The Bulldogs dropped to 0-6 in WAC play.
"My goal for the year is to change the mentality of the girls from losing to winning," Hawks head coach Kelly Heese said. "They're not losers. Every match we've lost this year is us beating ourselves. It's all mental for them."
"We're a lot more competitive this year," Lorenzo added. "We have a really strong team."
Lorenzo tallied four digs, two kills, two aces and one assist against Ceres High.
Hawk teammates Nicholette Mendez, Julia Ramsey, Lynaya Lerma, Elizabeth Olide, Lexy Cordova, Leah Faamafi, Nicole Munoz and Casey McCloskey were counted upon as well.
Mendez had 12 assists and four aces.
Ramsey had eight kills, one block and one assist.
Lerma had six kills and one block.
Olide had five assists, one ace and one kill.
Cordova had five aces and one dig.
Faamafi had three kills and three blocks.
Munoz had one kill.
McCloskey had one block.
Bulldog sophomore Jessica Arreola collected 18 digs.
Sophomore Sabrina Baisdon dished out 10 assists.
Junior Ryleigh Honberger had seven kills and four blocks.
Sophomore Kaytlin Donaldson contributed four aces.
Central Valley imposed its will after dropping the first set.
The Hawks' margin-of-victory increased during the final three sets.
"I was very concerned," Heese said. "Their confidence level really increased once they caught fire. Once you light the fire, you have to keep that flame burning. I want them to have that from the very beginning. You should be giving it your all until the match is over."
"Our communication was a lot better tonight," Lorenzo said. "We needed it to be. I thought it would be a lot more competitive. We played in a tournament and tied."
Central Valley students formed a tunnel for Hawk players to run through following the crosstown match.
"It means a lot," Lorenzo said.
Playing from behind for the second time in as many weeks, the Hawks rallied for a victory. Central Valley stormed back for a 21-25, 23-25, 25-21, 25-22, 15-13 win over host Livingston on Sept. 30.
The Hawks beat the Bulldogs twice last season.
"It's one of our most important games," Lorenzo said while talking about Central Valley-Ceres High rivalry. "We can't let them beat us."