Castaic boys’ volleyball wins Las Vegas tournament 

Castaic boys' volleyball poses after winning their tournament. Photo Courtesy of Castaic boys' volleyball.
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For the second year in a row, Castaic Coyotes boys’ volleyball brought home some tournament hardware. 

This season, the Coyotes won the silver division of the Easter Classic Tournament in Las Vegas at Canyon Springs High School last weekend. 

After an up-and-down opening day on Friday, Castaic (14-16) was placed in the silver division, where the team was able to find its groove and win five straight matches to notch the championship on Saturday. 

Coyotes coach David Chae has had the same varsity group for three seasons now and was elated that his first graduating class will have even more to look back on down the road. 

“This is our first graduating class for volleyball and it’s been a really good way to end everything,” Chae said in a phone interview. “We’ve been to dozens of tournaments. We’ve played dozens of games and scrimmages, and having a silver division championship was awesome. I’m glad we were able to kind of say that we accomplished something. That was my biggest thing, just making sure that we just had some hardware to back up all the hard work that we’ve done.” 

Castaic clinched the tournament title with a 2-1 win over the hosting Canyon Springs Pioneers.  

The Coyotes had previously beaten the Pioneers in three sets earlier in the day on Saturday but Chae knows beating a team twice, especially one that pushed you past straight sets, is no small task. 

After a lopsided Castaic win in the first set, the Pioneers jumped back in the second with a 25-19 win. Castaic didn’t falter and pulled away fast to a 15-3 third-set, tournament-sealing victory. 

On Saturday, Chae moved senior opposite hitter Riley Humphrey to the outside spot. The swap was a major part of the team’s success as they fired off five wins in a row. Humphrey led the team over the weekend with 32 kills along with five blocks, 10 digs and four aces. 

Setter Everett Bain racked up most of the team’s assists in the balanced Coyote attack with 86. 

Senior Alecxis Padlan totaled 65 digs, Sebastian Ramirez added 22 kills while middle blocker Quinn Broadwater finished the tournament with 27 kills, nine blocks and seven aces. Broadwater shined brightly on Friday, against the eventual gold bracket winner, Palo Verde, with six kills in the second set alone.  

Castaic lost two three-set matches and won one 2-1 frame on Friday before being placed in silver. Chae’s team was right there with the eventual gold division teams but the team held its head high going into silver. 

“On the first day, we were right there with a lot of the teams,” Chae said. “We kept losing in three and the whole season has been like that for us. Really close matches but we just keep losing in three and five.” 

Castaic opened up Saturday with a three-set win over Pinecrest Academy Sloan Canyon. The team took down Canyon Springs in three sets before beating Chaparral in straight sets, 25-17, 25-12. 

The win set the stage for round two with the Pioneers in the silver championship match. Other than some minor adjustments in the match, Chae felt his team was just more motivated and in the zone. 

“We were definitely more motivated in that second match because we wanted to bring some hardware home,” Chae said. “Overall, the guys felt more confident and comfortable.” 

Castaic will return to Foothill League play next week needing some clutch wins. The Coyotes aren’t necessarily a long shot from clinching a postseason berth but the team could use some help in the standings on top of winning out. 

No matter the outcome, Chae has been proud of his squad throughout these past few years for enduring the struggles of building a program, although the group has expedited the process and won 25 matches in the past two seasons. 

“One thing I’m proud of is the fact that they kept enduring,” Chae said. “They never questioned me or they never questioned the program, they just kept going at it. They never complained. These are just good, solid guys that just wanted to play and no matter what the result was, that didn’t stop them from being their best.” 

Castaic returns home on Thursday, April 11, to host Hart at 5:30 p.m. 

Castaic coach David Chae (with plaque) poses with his coaching staff after winning the Easter Classic. Photo Courtesy of Castaic boys’ volleyball.

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