SALINAS VALLEY — With the playoffs looming, South Monterey County volleyball teams are currently in the middle of league play.

The Soledad Aztecs haven’t had a great start to league play. Since dropping the match to Monte Vista Christian, which they were up two sets to none, they have dropped their first four league games.

If there is a bright side to the defending league champs, the Aztecs have been competitive three of the four matches, making them complete all five sets.

For King City Mustang fans, the playoff picture looked worrisome at one time, with the team losing five of its first six matches. But the Mustangs have been dominating as of late, winning their last three league games against Gilroy in three sets, Monte Vista Christian in three sets to one, and Monterey in three straight sets.

King City multi-sport athlete Lisa Villanueva has been leading the attack for the Mustangs, recording double digit kills in her last two matches.

No team in South Monterey County is playing better volleyball than Gonzales right now. The Lady Spartans haven’t dropped a match since Aug. 30.

Gonzales has shown that it can get out of any situation. After dropping the first two sets to the Stevenson Pirates, the Lady Spartans returned to win the following three sets, 25-16, 25-23 and 15-13, moving them into first place at 4-0 in the Pacific Coast San Lucia Division.

Gonzales’ Ruby Virgen came up big with eight kills and six digs, while Bryanna Perez had 19 assists and six kills.

Similarly, Greenfield has been running through the competition since entering league play, going 5-0 in the Pacific Coast Arroyo Division. The Lady Bruins have only dropped one set in those five league games.

Lupita Nunez has been dominating this year, leading the Bruins in kills with 120. Also, Linda Ornelas has been a big help in leading the team in assists with 118.

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Jason Gallardo is the sports reporter for King City Rustler and Salinas Valley Tribune, a unified publication of Greenfield News, Soledad Bee and Gonzales Tribune. He covers high school sports for South Monterey County.


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