Team fails to beat Napa in a three set shutout

By Xavier Johnson, Scene Editor

The volleyball team failed to secure consecutive wins for the fifth time this season after a three set defeat at the hands of Napa Valley College (6-16 overall and 6-7 in the Bay Valley Conference) Friday in Napa.

The struggling Comets (5-14 overall and 3-11 in the BVC) traveled to Napa Valley College coming off a home victory against last place Laney College on Wednesday, breaking a four-game losing streak.

The opening set turned out to be the most competitive of the game with neither team able to gain the two point lead needed in order to win the set. With both teams making solid plays, and only giving away points due to errors, the set lasted until the Storm was able to pull away and win the set by a score of 33-31.

“The first set was really crazy, but at the end of the set, we were messing up so it was our fault,” Comet outside hitter Victoria Matue said. “I feel like we could have won the set if we cut down on errors.”

Freshman libero Delaine Baca said the intensity of the first set was the kind of play that the team thrives on.

After the competitive first set, for the third game in a row, the Comets had their worst set of the game in set two.

CCC dropped the second set 25-7.

In their previous three contests against Laney College and Yuba College, set two was the only set in which the Comets failed to score double-digit points.

Coach Christy Tianero said over the course of the season the Comets tend to wilt after playing a quality, hard set.

“I kind of had an idea they (CCC) were gonna play bad once they play a really good set,” Tianero said. “The next set is always like, ‘Whatever, we gave it our all, now we’re tired.’ It happens every single time. It’s just what they do,”

Middle hitter Makaya Thomas said the team was excited. However, after that excitement left, the team’s level of play went downhill for the second set.

The Comets started the set struggling to mount an offense. After falling behind 9-1,Tianero called her first time out of the set to settle her team down.

“We didn’t start off strong with serves. A bad start happens and we think that’s just how it needs to be. We lose that mentality to fight really hard,” Baca said.

Tianero said rather than receiving errors which has been an issue this season, the second set was marred by hitting and service errors, which isn’t typically the case.

After losing the second set, the Comets were able to bounce back to make for a competitive set three.

Thomas said during set three they minimized mistakes but couldn’t capture the same energy from the first set.

The Comets lost the third set 25-21.

Tianero said the Comets need more of a “player’s mentality” to close out games. “After a good set they feel like they need to chill,” she said.

Two contests remain in the 2017 campaign for the volleyball squad, with two games scheduled in two days against the top two teams in the BVC.

Tonight the Comets face first place Solano Community College (19-5 overall, 14-0 in the BVC) in an away game. The Comets return home Thursday to close out the season against second place Los Medanos College (16-8 overall, 11-3 in the BVC) in the Gymnasium at 6 p.m.