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Folsom sweeps Pleasant Grove in three

By: Brett Ransford/Telegraph Correspondent
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The Folsom High’s girls’ volleyball team celebrated its three seniors with a 3-0 sweep of visiting Pleasant Grove on Thursday, 25-18, 25-17, 25-15. Tiana Lee, Nicole Solak and Elise Newton played their final regular season home match as members of the Lady Bulldogs varsity squad, who is likely to enter the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II playoffs in early November as the No. 11 seed. The berth would be the highest seeding Folsom (4-5 DRL, 6-15) has received in the last four years, all of which Newton has been a part of. “The competition will be tough, but not as tough as the last three years. We have potential to go further in the playoffs this year,” said Newton. Thursday’s win was Folsom’s second three-set sweep of Pleasant Grove (0-9), the only winless Delta River league team. Jaia Lockett led Folsom with nine kills. She banged four kills in the third set and her team rose to its biggest lead of 11 points to finish the match. In the first game, two four-point runs separated Folsom from an 8-8 tie and the final six points, of which Lockett put down three kills. Folsom’s leads grew bigger in the final two games. Pleasant Grove had three aces in the second, but the Lady Bulldogs began the game on a 3-0 run and never gave up their lead. Folsom led the final game from start to finish. Solak started the game’s first two points on a kill and a block and an even better 4-0 start. She had two kills and two blocks in the third set. Pleasant Grove attempted to cut into their biggest deficit at 23-12, but it was too little too late against Solak’s second block to put Folsom into match-point. Junior opposite hitter Taylor Bright served the final point. In that final rally point she also laid out and dug for a point-saving hit, which was well placed to the surprise of her opponent and celebrated loudly inside the gymnasium. Folsom’s small core of seniors are surrounded by 11 juniors, who comprise the majority of coach Cinnamon DaSilva’s team. Newton has been a four-year varsity starter and captain. She has three years experience in the section playoffs, which goes back to the 2008 season in which Folsom was in Division I. Solak is a three-year varsity player and captain and Lee has been on varsity the past two years. All three seniors have gone down 3-1 in the first round of the Section Division II playoffs the past two years against Rocklin, who went on to lose to St. Francis in the 2009 final and won the 2010 title. Going in as the potential No. 11 seed could help Folsom advance past the first round – a feat the team hasn’t achieved since 2008. “We’ll just have to see what happens after Tuesday,” said DaSilva. Tuesday’s league finale will be played at Oak Ridge on the Lady Trojans own Senior Night. “It was a really special night for our seniors and it was nice to see us get 100 percent from everybody,” DaSilva said. “I think everybody wanted to give their best tonight and that’s what was out on the floor tonight.” Oak Ridge (7-1, 18-10) is currently ranked No. 2 in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I power ratings, behind only St. Francis. The Lady Trojans won the first match against Folsom 3-0 on Oct. 11.