Ponderosa too big, too much for Folsom volleyball squad

By: Nick Pecoraro/Telegraph Correspondent
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The Folsom High volleyball team has seen a lot of games get away from them this season. With No. 2 ranked Ponderosa coming into town, it would be much of the same old song and dance for the Lady Bulldogs. Ponderosa outmatched Folsom with their size on Tuesday night, sweeping the Lady Bulldogs in a Delta River League match, 25-16, 25-18 and 25-22. Folsom (5-14, 3-5 DRL) took the lead in the first game 15-14 before a sideout and nine straight serves from Bruins’ senior Samantha Rains deflated the Lady Bulldogs’ momentum. “We started the game with high intentions and then we made a few mistakes and just seemed to fizzle out somewhere in the middle,” said Folsom coach Cinnamon DaSilva. In the second game, Folsom pulled to within one point before Ponderosa coach Sheri Millhollin called a timeout. Clearly, her message got across to her team as the Lady Bruins forced another sideout and got the ball into the hands of a hot-serving Rains, who rallied off another six consecutive points for Ponderosa. “It’s incredibly hard when a team like that hits three feet above the net and we’re only a foot off the net and it’s hard trying to find our own hits over their blocks,” said junior setter Elise Newton, who led Folsom with 14 assists. The final game saw Folsom rally back from six points down late, but the Ponderosa combination of Sara Hickenbottom and Lianna Sybeldon put the Lady Bulldogs back in the kennel for good. “We know we are the underdogs in our league, but we have the desire to beat these really tough teams,” said Newton. Folsom is still in the chase for a postseason berth. The top-16 teams in Division II earn spots in the playoffs and the CIF San Joaquin Section midway rankings pit Folsom at number 11. “These next two games are going to be really big for us on whether we make the playoffs or not,” said sophomore hitter Jaia Lockett. “We need to work on our defense and not make silly little mistakes.”