Horizon VB sweeps Mtn. Pointe, faces Xavier in D-I semis
Originally published: Nov 7, 2013 - 12:00 am
Sierra Nobley has come a long way in her volleyball career at Phoenix Horizon High.
A thousand kills worth, to be exact.
“It’s crazy,’’ the 6-foot-1 senior outside hitter said, when asked if she ever thought she would reach that milestone.
It is Nobley’s goal to come up with a few more power shots before the Huskies’ season is done.
That would be against Phoenix Xavier Prep in Saturday’s (Nov. 9) Division I semifinals at Gilbert Mesquite High, and if all goes according to plan, against Chandler Hamilton or Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor in the final on Tuesday (Nov. 12), also at Mesquite.
Nobley had 10 kills, giving her 1,000 for her career, as the top-seeded, defending champion Huskies swept visiting No. 9 Phoenix Mountain Pointe 25-12, 25-17 and 25-14.
Horizon has defeated Xavier, its opponent in last year’s title match, three times this season. There was a five-set marathon, two out of three in the Gilbert Invitational and a sweep.
“This should be for the championship (instead of the semis),’’ said Horizon coach Valorie McKenzie. “Every time Xavier plays Horizon, they bring their best game every time. Now it’s a new season.’’
Said Nobley: “It’s always fun to play them. We look forward to the challenge.’’
Horizon had swept Mountain Pointe on Oct. 30 and had a certain strategy in mind this time.
Part of it involved good serves and allowing the Pride as little time as possible to react.
“We worked on it, being more aggressive with our serves,’’ McKenzie said.
Horizon (37-2) scored 14 straight points to take control of Game 1, and a service ace by Jensen Cunningham was the final point.
Mountain Pointe (20-20) put up more of a fight in Game 2. The Pride had pulled to within 17-16. But a kill by Tess Clark began a 7-0 run by Horizon, and the 6-4 Cunningham finished this one off with a kill.
Another 7-0 Horizon run midway through Game 3 to strengthen its hold on the evening. Back-to-back aces by Nobley keyed that outburst.
“We all work well together as a team,’’ Nobley said. “If one of us happens to struggle, the others will pick them up.’’
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