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CV qualifies for playoffs for second straight season
Hawks top Dawgs in volleyball, earn postseason berth
Ellysa Widas sets up a teammate during Central Valleys 3-0 sweep of crosstown-rival Ceres High last week. - photo by DALE BUTLER/The Courier

The members of Central Valley High School's varsity volleyball team contained their excitement.

There was no over-the-top celebration following Thursday evening's 25-11, 25-11, 25-18 victory over crosstown-rival Ceres High at Phil de la Porte Gymnasium.

Central Valley improved to 7-3 in the Western Athletic Conference and advanced to the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs for the second year in a row.

The Bulldogs dropped to 3-7 in WAC play.

"It's awesome to be a part of something successful," Central Valley standout Julia Ramsey said. "Playoffs were our first goal. We're all pretty excited. We made it. Our next goal is to beat Los Banos on Thursday."

Ramsey collected 18 kills, three aces, one block and one assist against Ceres High.

Alyssa Costa added six kills, two blocks, two assists and one ace.

Mariana Garibay had four aces, one kill and one dig.

Blanca Espinoza chipped in with three digs and one dig.

Ally Hailey led the Bulldogs with seven digs and four aces.

Breanna Moreno tallied seven digs.

Sabrina Baisdon totaled seven assists.

Kendall Meyer had five blocks and three kills.

Central Valley topped Ceres High 25-20, 25-17, 25-13 on Sept. 29.

The Bulldogs challenged the Hawks in the early going of last week's match.

Tied at 5-5, Central Valley won the first game on the strength of a 20-6 run.

The Hawks accounted for 16 of the final 18 points while winning the second game.

Central Valley and Ceres High tied five times during the third game. The Hawks finished off the Bulldogs with a 20-13 run.

The Bulldogs led just seven times on the night.

"We never underestimate anybody," Heese said. "Ceres High has good athletes. They're getting better."

Central Valley struggled in beating Livingston 25-15, 23-25, 25-7, 25-21 two days earlier.

"We had a team meeting and vented about things," Heese said.

Central Valley will play on the road versus defending WAC-champion Los Banos (9-1) tomorrow at 6:30 p.m.

The Hawks lost 16-25, 26-24, 18-25, 25-12, 15-12 to the Tigers earlier this season in Ceres.

"We'll be ready," Heese said.

Central Valley has improved each season since Heese and Ramsey landed on campus during the 2013-14 school year.

The Hawks accomplished several firsts last year when they qualified for the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs and compiled a winning record. Central Valley (8-5) earned the WAC's third and final postseason berth.

The Hawks finished in fourth place in the conference standings (5-7) and just missed qualifying for the playoffs during Heese's first year as head coach.

Central Valley (2-10) tied for last place in the WAC with crosstown-rival in 2012-13.

"This is awesome," Heese said. "Our goal is playoffs. Now, we're working towards second place."

"We've come far as a program," Ramsey said. "It's amazing. We have a lot more club ball players. That has definitely helped us. We have really good communication. We've worked hard."