SALINAS VALLEY — Volleyball is back in South Monterey County after the varsity girls’ teams participated in their respective league jamboree, with most heading into preseason games this week.

Gonzales High School, which went 10-1 and captured the Santa Lucia League title last year, got moved up to the Cypress Division for this season.

The Spartans will go through some growing pains as they try to replace last year’s Defensive Player of the Year Ruby Virgen and League MVP Bry Perez.

The Spartans were in action on Monday when they hosted Everett Alvarez.

Greenfield Bruins, who are coming off their best season in school history going 14-1 and winning the Arroyo Division, are looking to repeat as champs again, but this time they will be competing in the Santa Lucia Division.

With the losses of Defensive Player of the Year Linda Ornelas and MVP Lupita Nunez, the Lady Bruins will mostly take a step back and not have the season they had last year. But out of the four South County teams, they have the best chance to win another league title.

The Lady Bruins will need Ariana Villagomez, who was a first-team all-league Arroyo Division outside hitter, to be one of their leaders coming into this season.

Greenfield will start their season at home against Soledad on Sept. 1.

If there’s any team in South County that wants to forget about last year it’s the Soledad Aztecs. After a disappointing season, the Aztecs got moved to the Cypress Division.

Although the Lady Aztecs moved back to Cypress, the last time they were in the league they went 15-0 and captured the league title.

King City Mustangs, who made the playoffs last year, will once again stay in the Mission Division. The Lady Mustangs will turn to their star softball player, Lisa Villanueva, who had 123 kills last season.

The Lady Mustangs will start the season on Thursday against Alisal.

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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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