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Fifth time the charm for Indians

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Fifth time the charm for Indians

Ripon High's volleyball team poses with the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV championship banner Thursday at UC Davis after failing to capture the flag in its previous four seasons. The Indians earn...

JONAMAR JACINTO/The Bulletin


POSTED November 19, 2010 3:02 a.m.
DAVIS — The streak came to a halt for Ripon High varsity volleyball team.

Finally.

After coming up empty in previous CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV title games, the Indians found the fifth time to be the charm Thursday at UC Davis.

Top-ranked Ripon (34-6) swept No. 2 Golden Sierra in straight games — 25-21, 27-25, 25-21.

“This (section title) meant everything to me,” said senior outside hitter Cheyann DePrue, who paced the Indian attack with 19 kills and two blocks. “Volleyball is my life.”

Added senior middle blocker Coryn Hernandez: “We’re finally bringing back section title back to Ripon.”

It had been 27 years since Ripon won its last section crown, losing in recent years to Sacramento powerhouse Christian Brothers, which has moved up to Division III.

But Indians coach Larry Keethe didn’t take the Bruins lightly.

“They were better than we thought,” he said. “We may have won in three straight, but it wasn’t easy.”

The Grizzlies had trouble handling the Ripon passing and upfront attacking led by DePrue, who delivered on nine kills in the opening game.

Golden Sierra (21-12) fought back to tie the game at 20-20.

Ripon answered back on a block by senior setter Kelsey Johnston, who also setup Hernandez on the decisive point.

Johnson was another key figure in the match, according to Keethe.

“Without her, we wouldn’t have won,” he said.

Ripon fell behind 15-9. The Grizzlies were fueled by the play of Sierra Cokinos, Katie Christner and Madisen Penley, but then let the game slip away on several unforced errors.

The game seesawed with Golden Sierra taking a 25-24 lead thanks to a tap shot by Christner.

The Indians tied things up on DePrue’s kill and went ahead for good on an out-of-bound shot by the Grizzlies.

In the finale, Ripon played strong defense and went on the attack, getting kills from DePrue and Hernandez, who finished with 11 spikes along with four blocks.

Hernandez, Johnston, Paulina Ceja, and Nicole Kaiser had two serving aces each.

Ceja, who helped spark the defense with her back row play, finished with 23 digs.

That part of the game was key to the Ripon victory, according to DePrue.

“Our defense really stepped it up,” she said.

The Indians will play host to next week’s Northern California Regional Championship game.
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