Men's Volleyball

Men's volleyball team falls to Orange Coast on Dig Pink Night

Men's volleyball team falls to Orange Coast on Dig Pink Night

Friday night featured one of Irvine Valley's annual Dig Pink events, sophomore night for the men's volleyball team and the IVC women's volleyball team received their State Championship rings.

There was also a pretty big match on the court between Irvine Valley and Orange Coast in a battle for second place in the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference.

Orange Coast finished each set strong to pull out a 25-21, 27-25, 25-20 win and claim the second-place position in conference.

Finishing second gives Orange Coast a home match for the start of the CCCAA state playoffs next week. The Pirates (15-5 overall and 12-2 in conference) will host Long Beach City, which finished third in the Western State Conference.

By coming in third, Irvine Valley (13-5 overall and 11-3 in conference) will travel to El Camino, which was second in its conference.

Irvine Valley had its chances in each set on Friday. The Lasers rattled off three straight points, capped by a kill by sophomore opposite Arek Halaj, to go up, 18-15, in the first set.

But Orange Coast answered with five straight points.  Adrian Faitalia's kill put Coast ahead, 20-18.

Irvine Valley stayed close at 22-21 after an ace by sophomore outside hitter Josh Schmidt.

Orange Coast closed out the set, however, with the final three points.

The Pirates held a 19-14 advantage in the second set, but Irvine Valley rallied. The Lasers used an 8-3 run to tie the set. A crosscourt kill by sophomore outside hitter Trey Bernal after Halaj kept the point alive with a big dig got the Lasers to 22-22.

The set was tied, 23-23, after a kill by IVC middle blocker Kevin Dell, tied again, 24-24, on a setter dump by freshman setter Jake Adams and evened at 25-25 on a kill by freshman outside hitter Peter Van Liefde.

But Orange Coast came up with the final two points of the set on back-to-back kills by Kyle Hurst and Faitalia.

The third set was close most of the way.  There were 12 ties and neither team led by more than two points until late.

Tied, 17-17, Orange Coast scored three in a row to take control. A kill by Patrick Henry gave the Pirates a 20-17 advantage.

Irvine Valley came back with two straight points to make it 20-19, but then OCC scored four points in a row on a kill by Kamaha'o Paio, an ace by Alex Podrasky, a kill by Henry and a block by Nick Amado to go ahead, 24-19.

Two points later, Faitalia ended the match for the Pirates with a kill.

Faitalia led Orange Coast with 13 kills. Amado added eight kills and five blocks. Podrasky contributed 16 digs and four aces and setter Steven Duhoux had 29 assists.

Irvine Valley was paced by Van Liefde with 10 kills and Halaj with nine kills.

Sophomore outside hitter Josh Schmidt added seven kills and Dell had six kills for the Lasers. Sophomore libero Billy Crow chipped in 15 digs and Adams ended with 21 assists.


Irvine Valley's men's and women's volleyball teams ended up raising $1,901 for the Side-Out Foundation to support breast cancer awareness. The men's volleyball team ran the event during the women's Dig Pink Night last fall against Golden West. The Laser women were in charge of Friday night's Dig Pink festivities. Fans in attendance at both matches received a pink Asics shirt with their admission and had a chance to win prizes and gifts through a raffle.

Irvine Valley honored sophomores Trey Bernal, Billy Crow, Kevin Dell, Arek Halaj, Nate Kofman, Cole Murray and Matt Mittry and each of their parents before the match.

IVC's women's volleyball players received their State Championship rings between the second and third sets of Friday night's match. Coach Tom Pestolesi handed out rings to players and coaches as well as support staff. IVC went undefeated (27-0) to capture the program's first-ever state championship. The Lasers were dominant, dropping just seven sets all year.

Pestolesi also gave sophomore Annie Mitchem her AVCA Two-Year National Player of the Year award. It was the second straight year that Mitchem earned the honor. Mitchem, a 6-2 middle blocker, is headed to play at the University of Hawaii in the fall.

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