Three Santa Clarita Christian School volleyball starting players sat on the bench wearing their uniforms, but they’d never touch the court in Thursday night’s match against Palmdale Aerospace Academy.
Injury had forced them to the sidelines, but the Cardinals (7-2 overall, 1-0 in Heritage League) soldiered on and swept the Griffins (7-7-1, 1-1) at home.
“Anybody walking in … they wouldn’t have known that three girls were out,” said coach Darcy Brown.
SCCS counted on the aggressive offense and strong hitting of Kalona Marr, Aaronya Crosswhite and Cora Machado to put points on the board in all three games, which were won 25-11, 25-13 and 25-9.
Marr led the team with 16 kills, followed by Crosswhite with nine then Machado with five. Megan Dombrowski also had a team-high 24 assists.
“We had great passing today,” Brown said. “You can’t run anything without a good pass so I felt like it was a complete team effort.
“Of course you see the skill up front, you know with the big hitters, but it has to always start with a pass and it felt like our passing was way better today, which allowed us to execute a good offense.”
The Cardinals never trailed in any game, although Palmdale Aerospace tied up Game 2 on four different occasions before SCCS pulled away.
As a team, the Cards had 13 aces.
“We served aggressive today and consequently we got a lot out of it,” said Brown.
Marr wrapped up the third game early, executing four kills to help put SCCS up 18-4. To her, the team’s flow was just as it always was, despite three new faces on the court. One of those faces, Shelby Wilson, was called up from the JV squad.
“I think that we realized that we need to step up and we need to try and play without (those players) even though it’s hard,” Marr said. “We still need to figure out how to win games and keep up our kills and defense with (them) being gone.”
SCCS next plays against cross-town rival Trinity Classical Academy on Oct. 3 at home at 6 p.m.