After stumbling in the quarterfinals while making a bid to win their seventh straight Division I beach volleyball crown last season, Xavier Prep’s Gators are back on course as they attempt to reclaim what they feel is rightfully theirs – the state title trophy.
(April 12), they completed the first step toward that goal – an unbeaten
regular season – with a 5-0 win over Phoenix Mountain Pointe at Kiwanis Park in
Now the 11-0
Gators will wait for the Arizona Interscholastic Association to put together
its state tournament brackets, likely around Easter weekend. Xavier sits atop
the power-points rankings with Gilbert Perry No. 2. Xavier fell to Perry in
last year’s quarterfinals but came back to defeat the Pumas earlier this
hold a couple of practices early next week, which is during the school’s Spring
Break, then “recharge,’’ according to coach Tim McHale, before resuming
practices leading up to the state tournament opener on April 23. A handful of
the girls will be involved with club volleyball activities next week.
he took a cautious approach to facing Mountain Pointe, “because they are very
athletic, well-coached and can sneak up on you.’’
In one of
the first matches of the day, Mountain Pointe proved to be a challenge for the
5 pair of Zaira Reyes and Katie Anthony took the first game 21-8, but Mountain
Pointe recovered to earn a 21-19 win in Game 2. Xavier won the decisive Game 3,
On the court
next door, the No. 4 duo of Grace Lincoln and Shea Sciarappo defeated the Pride
by nearly identical 21-15 and 21-16 scores.
At No. 3
were Analy Carbine and Tori Burton, who triumphed 21-8 and 21-12. Carbine, a
junior, continues her late-season rise after being sidelined early with an
illness. McHale said he can plug her into the lineup at almost any spot and
still get a quality effort.
Next was the
No. 2 combo of Abby Converse and Serena Turner. They won, 21-5 and 21-17, and
are good enough to be No. 1 on many teams, particularly with Turner using her
height advantage (the sophomore is 6-1) to keep opponents on their heels with
And in the
top spot are seniors Trinity Cavanaugh and Shannon Shields. They use their
agility and all-out effort to reach the ball where some others can’t. They
wrapped up the match with a 21-16, 21-16 victory.