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Results tagged “MC women's volleyball” from College Sports Blog

With new system, Moorpark building to Friday showdown

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Since falling in four sets at Santa Barbara City Oct. 17, the Moorpark College women's volleyball team has worked for its second chance.

A five-match winning streak has meant the Raiders (12-7, 7-1) will be playing for a piece of its fifth straight WSC North title Friday night when it welcomes first-place Santa Barbara (14-6, 8-0) to Raider Pavilion.

"At least we've put ourselves in that position," Moorpark coach Steve Burkhart said. "I feel good about the way we've been playing."

Running a non-traditional system that features three middle blockers, Moorpark has slowly improved throughout its schedule.

"It's been a slow evolution," Burkhart said. "This is a team you wish you had for another month."

Middles Gabriella Luciani, Taylor Susim and Brittany Sharpe also have to share outside and opposite hitter responsibilities.

"They all have a lot of different responsibilities," Burkhart said. "I thought this was the best we could do and that's what it took. It was kind of a learning thing for me, too."

Susim is second in the WSC with block assists (49). Outside hitter Amber Glaab leads the team in hitting (.223) and kills (183).

Moorpark volleyball streak snapped

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In a meeting of the WSC North's two unbeatens, the Moorpark College women's volleyball team fell in four sets Wednesday night at Santa Barbara City College.

The loss snapped the Raiders' 16-match WSC North winning streak that dated back to a three-set loss to Santa Barbara in Nov. 12, 2010

"There were two Moorpark teams playing," Moorpark coach Steve Burkhart said.

"The team in the first game is the team we think we have. The next three games was the team I hope we don't see again."

Moorpark (9-7, 3-1) won its 49th straight set in WSC North play when it took the opener, 25-20, but first-place Santa Barbara (11-6, 5-0) responded 25-15, 25-21, 25-14.

"It wasn't a case where they did a lot," Burkhart said. "We just didn't execute on offense the way we needed to."

Gabby Luciani had seven kills and 13 digs. Amber Glaab had six kills and 18 digs. Taylor Susim had 10 blocks.

The loss was Moorpark's second straight, which followed a three-match winning streak.

"We've been on a pretty major rollercoaster all year," Burkhart said. "We've been consistently inconsistent. We've been working really hard to be just a little more consistent.

"We're still in the race. Hopefully, we'll get a little better."

Moorpark hosts cross-county rival Ventura (3-12, 2-2) tonight at Raider Pavilion. The Pirates are riding on a two-match WSC North winning streak, having come from 2-0 down to catch visiting Cuesta in five sets Friday behind Laura Acosta's 14 kills.

MC volleyball blocking by committee

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With Karissa Flack now in the green and white of North Texas, the Moorpark College women's volleyball team opens its season tonight with a hole in the middle of the court.

"When you graduate the best middle (blocker) in the state, you're worried about being able to terminate balls," Moorpark coach Steve Burkhart said. "You could always count on Karissa to terminate balls."

Rather than looking to one player to replace the All-America middle blocker, Burkhart will look for everyone on the court to pick up a share of the load.

"We're having to spread it out," Burkhart said.

Moorpark returns middle blocker Gabriella Luciani, right side Brittany Sharpe and outside hitter Rebecca Jones.

"The really nice thing about this team is we have kids who can play different positions," Burkhart said. "I'm hoping we can use that to our advantage a little bit."

Redshirt freshman Brittnie Blanchard, who sat out last season with a knee injury, takes over the setting role. A pair of transfers, middle blocker Erin Parks (Cal Lutheran) and outside hitter Amber Glaab (Newbury Park High, UC Santa Cruz), will also add experience and balance.

"It feels like it's been a long time since I started a fresh, new group," Burkhart said. "We were struggling in those (preseason) scrimmages, but I think we're starting to figure things out."

Moorpark is opening this season tonight against the same school that ended its run last November: Irvine Valley.

"Let's go jump right into the fire," Burkhart said.

Burkhart hints, however, that he'll have to be patient this fall.

"I really feel like this is a late-blossoming team," Burkhart said. "There's a long way to go, but by the time we get to league, I hope we're settling in."

Flack commits to North Texas

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Moorpark College women's volleyball star Karissa Flack, the Star's Female Athlete of the Fall Season, has verbally committed to the University of North Texas.

A 6-foot middle blocker from Newbury Park, Flack earned first-team All-American honors by guiding the Raiders to the WSC North title, including a two-month-long undefeated streak. The WSC North MVP finished second in the state in both kills (364) and hitting percentage (.463).

"I'm very excited," said Flack, days after returning from a visit to the Denton, Tex. Division I school. "I'm going there focused on volleyball and school. I know it's like a job."

Flack completes an eclectic recruiting that included interest from Alabama and Illinois-Chicago, as well as recruiting visits to Cal State Monterey Bay and Cal State East Bay, by committing to one of the first schools that showed interest in her this season.

Flack, Burkhart top All-WSC volleyball honors

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Moorpark College sophomore Karissa Flack and Moorpark College coach Steve Burkhart earned the top honors when the All-WSC North women's volleyball team was announced earlier this month.

Flack, a 6-foot middle blocker from Newbury Park High, was voted the Player of the Year after leading the WSC in kills (364), hitting (.463) and solo blocks (61).

Burkhart, who guided the 12-0 Raiders to their ninth WSC North championships, was named WSC Coach of the Year for the fifth time. Moorpark became the first WSC team in more than 30 years to sweep its division without dropping a game.

The All-WSC North first team also included Moorpark sophomore setter Jessica Soprano, sophomore libero Michelle Tanaka and freshman middle blocker Gabriella Luciani, as well as Ventura freshman outside hitter Dejiana Rubio.

The second team included Moorpark sophomore setter Taylor Frederick and sophomore outside hitter Brooke Mataele; Ventura sophomore middle blocker Alexandra Joyce and sophomore libero Leandra Romero; and Oxnard sophomore middle blocker Brooke Reed.

Honorable mention included Moorpark sophomore outside hitter Alyssa Del Sesto and sophomore libero Jasmine Sagisi; Ventura freshman middle blocker Jeanette Gonzales and sophomore setter Kryssy Koziel; and Oxnard freshman outside hitter Mirella Esparza and sophomore middle blocker Mary Grace Edrada.

Flack, Raiders opens with familiar foe

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Riding high on a 15-match winning streak, the No. 7-seeded Moorpark College women's volleyball team (20-3) will open the Southern California regional playoffs against No. 10 Irvine Valley (14-5) tonight at 6 p.m.

Moorpark has won 43 consecutive games during its streak. The last team to take a game off the Raiders? Irvine Valley during a four-game Raiders victory Sept. 23

"I don't know what significance, if any, that has," said Moorpark coach Steve Burkhart. "Other than we know we can play with them.

Sophomore middle blocker Karissa Flack, the Newbury Park High product who is being recruited by Alabama, is No. 2 in the state in both kills (364) and hitting (.463).

But middle blocker Gabrielle Luciani (Buena High) and outside hitters Brooke Mataele and Alyssa Del Sesto (Oak Park High) are just three of the Raiders who have played well during the streak.

"If they can load up on Karissa and we can go someplace else and get the ball down, that's going to make us much tougher to defend," said Burkhart.

Tickets for today's playoff matches are $8 for adults and $5 for children.

Moorpark volleyball seeded No. 7

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The Moorpark College women's volleyball team was seeded No. 7 in the Southern California regional playoff field Sunday.

The Moorpark (20-3) will host No. 10 Irvine Valley (14-5) in the regional quarterfinals Tuesday at 6 p.m.

Moorpark has won 43 straight games during its 15-match winning streak, which began with a four-game win over Irvine Valley at Raider Pavilion Sept. 23.

Sophomore middle blocker Karissa Flack is No. 2 in the state in both kills (364) and hitting (.463).

Defending state champion Los Angeles Pierce (27-0) is the No. 1 seed.

No catching Flack

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Moorpark's run can be attributed the play of contributors like middle blocker Gabriella Luciani, outside hitters Brooke Mataela and Alyssa Del Sesto and setters Jessica Soprano and Taylor Fredrick around a star like middle blocker Karissa Flack, who may be the top player in the state.

The 6-foot sophomore from Newbury Park High is leading the WSC in kills (353), hitting percentage (.461) and solo blocks (61).

"I think that Karissa keeps improving, which is really nice to see," said Burkhart. "She's pretty much achieved what I expected of her this year. I just can't remember a time when one kid dominated a league like she has... Right now, it's her time."

Flack, who originally signed with Wright State out of high school, has been recruited by North Texas and Loyola of Chicago for much of the year. Local schools like Cal State Fullerton and UC Santa Barbara have contacted her recently. Alabama just visited Raider Pavilion to watch her practice.

"It started out as a trickle and now you're getting three or four calls per day," said Burkhart. "She's worked hard and she's a good student, so she's done everything she needs to do to put herself in a good position."

MC volleyball stuck at No. 8

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Despite a 12-match winning streak, which includes sweeping 34 straight games, the Moorpark College women's volleyball team hasn't been able to make any moves in the Southern California and state coaches' polls.

The Raiders (17-3, 9-0) stayed at No. 8 in Southern California and No. 10 in the state this week.

Sophomore middle blocker Karissa Flack lead the state in hitting percentage, was second in kills and 10th in blocks in the state's most recent statistical update last week. She leads the WSC in hitting percentage (.444), kills (321) and solo blocks (58).

Still swinging

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Wednesday's 3-0 sweep of Los Angeles Mission pushed the Moorpark College women's volleyball team winning streak to 11 matches and 31 games dating back to Sept. 21.

Behind sophomore middle blocker Karissa Flack, who leads the WSC in kills (293), solo blocks (57) and hitting percentage (.440), Moorpark has swept nine straight matches, 3-0, including last week's visit to Santa Barbara, which split the WSC North title with the Raiders the past two seasons.

Surging MC volleyball slips to No. 9

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Another team has slipped above the Moorpark College women's volleyball team in the Southern California coaches' poll.

Last week, it was Mount San Antonio. This week, it was Orange Coast.

The Raiders, who are surging on a seven-match winning streak, have slipped from No. 7 to No. 8 to No. 9 in the past two polls. Through no fault of their own obviously.

The Raiders have won 22 straight games during their winning streak ahead of Wednesday night's showdown at Santa Barbara City. The two teams are both 5-0 in the WSC North, having shared the division title in each of the past two seasons.

Click the jump for full poll.

MC volleyball slips one spot

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Despite not dropping a game for two weeks, the Moorpark College women's volleyball team (10-3) slipped one spot to No. 7 in Southern California when the most recent coaches' poll was released Monday.

Moorpark also dropped to No. 9 in the state poll. Mt. San Antonio (11-2) leapt over the Raiders despite a loss to No. 4 Pasadena City.

The three-time defending WSC North champion opened divisional play by sweeping rival Ventura and newcomers Los Angeles Mission. The Raiders have won 13 straight games in their five-match winning streak.

MC volleyball rises to No. 6

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The Moorpark College women's volleyball team (6-3) has climbed to No. 6 in Southern California after a big four-game win over Irvine Valley and a tight five-game loss to Grossmont last week.

Click the jump for the full poll.

Moorpark volleyball ranked No. 8 in first poll

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The Moorpark College women's volleyball team opened at No. 8 in Southern California after its 3-0 start.

The Raiders, who return star middle blocker Karissa Flack and setters Jessica Soprano and Taylor Frederick, opened the season by winning the Santa Monica College tournament, which included wins over No. 9 Cypress (4-4) and No. 5-N American River (4-1).

Click the jump for the full poll.

All-WSC North women's volleyball team

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Five members of the co-champion Moorpark College women's volleyball team earned All-WSC North honors this fall.

The All-WSC North first team included Moorpark sophomore libero Ericka Smith, freshmen middle blocker Karissa Flack and freshman setter Jessica Soprano, as well as Ventura freshman libero Katelyne Kwake.

The second team included sophomores Morgan Vreeland and Chelcy Westphal of Moorpark; Andy Perez and Becky Simanu of Oxnard; and freshman Morgan Ehritt and sophomore Shelbee Younce of Ventura.

Santa Barbara City's Kelsey Soos was the Player of the Year and Hancock's Julio Molina was the Coach of the Year.

Click the jump for the full team.

A Common Opponent

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As the men's basketball representative to the CCCAA management council, Moorpark College athletic director Howard Davis is helping to organize a joint cancer awareness effort by the men's and women's basketball coaches' associations.

The goal is to present a check for $50,000 to the American Cancer Society during the state Final Four at Ventura College in March.

Forty schools, including all seven in the WSC North, have already pledged to join the effort, which is being mirrored on the "Coaches vs. Cancer" and "Pink Zone" efforts on the NCAA level.

Some programs will pledge their gate, others will organize an anti-cancer themed event similar to those hosted recently by the Ventura College women's basketball and women's soccer and Moorpark College women's volleyball teams.

Racing back

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Moorpark College outside hitter Shannon Pearson may be on the verge of returning to the Raiders' women's volleyball team just in time for the postseason.

The sophomore from Thousand Oaks, who has missed the last nine games after suffering a severely sprained ankle in practice last month, had her cast removed Thursday.

Pearson is resigned to missing Tuesday's postseason opener, but, should the Raiders progress, she hopes to return in time to contribute in a potential second-round game.

"I'm so excited," said Pearson. "I need to get some range of motion back, but I'm hoping to get cleared for our next game."

MC volleyball clinches third-straight WSC title

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Karissa Flack had 15 kills and Jessica Soprano had 17 assists as the Moorpark College women's volleyball team clinched a share of its third straight Western State Conference title with a three-game sweep of visiting Cuesta Tuesday night at Raider Pavilion.

Erika Smith had 12 digs, Michelle Tanaka had seven aces and Alyssa Del Sesto and Chelcy Westphal had five kills apiece as the No. 13-ranked Raiders (14-7) bounced back from Friday's loss in Santa Barbara to win, 25-10, 25-14, 26-24.

"We were awfully leery," said Moorpark coach Steve Burkhart. "I tried to convince the girls that this was our home playoff game. We needed to focus."

Moorpark dominated the first two games before surviving a game point to come from behind to take the third game.

"For us, it was trying to serve tough and play with a lot of passion," said Burkhart.

For the second straight season, Moorpark and Santa Barbara City split the WSC North title at 9-1. They split their two meetings, the home team prevailing on both occasions.
Moorpark also won three consecutive titles under Burkhart from 2001-03.

"We're pretty honored by it," said Burkhart.

The field for the Southern California regional playoffs will be announced Sunday.

MC volleyball takes control

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After a series of five-game heartbreakers plagued the early part of its season, the Moorpark College women's volleyball team kept swinging.

And now the Raiders (10-6, 5-0) are putting themselves in position to regain the WSC North title.

"We had a lot of hard luck early in the year," said Moorpark coach Steve Burkhart. "Sooner or later we had to make this change... I hope this puts us in the picture."

A five-match winning streak to begin conference play has included five-game victories against defending champion Santa Barbara City and at Cuesta in the past week.

Friday's epic 25-23, 23-25, 23-25, 25-23, 15-6 win over the Vauqeros pushed the Raiders into sole possession of first place.

"The kids were fighters," said Burkhart Friday. "We just lost one of our best kids."

Sophomore outside hitter Shannon Pearson watched the game in a cast.

"It's just hard to replace a kid like that," said Burkhart.

Moorpark has leaned on freshman middle blocker Karissa Flack, who leads the WSC in block assists (56), is third in hitting percentage (.386) and fifth in kills (180).

"What can you say?" asked Burkhart. "She's just carrying us right now."

Big match tonight for MC women

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The first match of the home-and-home series which may decide the WSC North women's volleyball race arrives tonight in Moorpark, where the Raiders (8-6, 3-0) host defending champion and No. 10-ranked Santa Barbara City (14-4, 3-0)

"We've been coming together more as a team," said Moorpark sophomore Chelcy Westphal.

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Ventura County Star sports writer and columnist Joe Curley covers college sports and soccer for this Star. This is the place to click for local college football and basketball coverage, including USC, UCLA, Moorpark College, Ventura College and Cal Lutheran.

Curley will update from live events and also interject with periodic comment on both international soccer and the local Ventura County Fusion.