LATHROP – After dropping the first set to visiting Sierra 25-21 on Wednesday, Lathrop rode the hot hand of freshman Gian Serrano to sweep the next three games 25-11, 25-18, 25-21 for the 3-1 Valley Oak League win.
The Spartans avenged their loss to the Timberwolves in the Sierra Tournament this past weekend.
“It was very stressful,” Spartans coach Maria Treltas said. “After that first game we got it together with more communication in transition.
“We have six setters and six hitters and used our strategy with them. We are looking really good.”
Serrano was the top hitter for Lathrop (1-1 VOL, 4-6 overall), smashing 15 kills and 11 digs with three blocks and two aces.
“That first game we were just horrible,” Serrano said. “We were low on energy.
“In the second and third games we started turning things around by talking, getting more energetic and hitting the ball better.”
The Spartans never trailed in the second and fourth sets, but Kurtis Parrish (nine kills, block) did all he could to get the Timberwolves (0-1, 1-10) a win in the fourth. With Sierra trailing 23-16, Parrish nailed four kills to help draw the Timberwolves to within 24-21 and almost had a fifth when Serrano made a miraculous save to keep the volley alive which was won by Spartans, ending the match.
“He has been kind of holding back,” Sierra coach Michelle Springmeyer said of Parrish. “And finally in the last couple of practices we have worked on his swing and we have worked on his control and making smarter decisions. One of the things all the guys have been working on is having better IQ at the net and he really came through at the end there.
“We played around with our rotation that second set and our energy just wasn’t there. I think that’s one thing we need to learn is to keep it up no matter what. That’s just something we have to work on.”
Tyler Riggleman (three aces) got three of his seven kills for Lathrop in the last set.
“We started off really bad,” Riggleman said. “But our coach was on us and we pulled through.”
Sergio Tapia had his serve down, nailing six aces for the Spartans.
“I feel like I could have done a little better,” Tapia said. “But I pushed as hard as I could and I am proud of that.”
Karandeep Singh added four aces and two kills for Lathrop and Mark Fabian chipped in five kills.
Abdiel Tesfandrias led the Sierra attack with six kills, five aces and two blocks. Arshdeep Singh added four kills and a block with Diego Gracia getting eight assists and Lance Vann six.