Carson volleyball drops one to Damonte Ranch

Emily Bell tips a ball over the top of Damonte Ranch blocker Alyssa Zurro Thursday.

Emily Bell tips a ball over the top of Damonte Ranch blocker Alyssa Zurro Thursday.

It was a fairly clean first set for the Senators Thursday night, but after dropping the opening frame, 25-21, the Damonte Ranch Mustangs didn't let up taking the next two sets 25-17 and 25-18.

Cami Larkin posted two kills for Carson's first two points of the match and then had a block to win the fourth point of the opening set.

After her third kill, the Senators led 7-5 and had started to rally the bench and the Carson fans in attendance.

Raymie Brooks added an ace to give Carson a 12-9 lead, which ended up being the biggest Senator lead of the night.

Carson continued to hang right with the now 22-2 overall Mustangs, but at 18-18 Damonte Ranch grabbed a firm hold on the opening set.

Four kills in a six-point span for Cayton White, the last of which rolled across the net and fell into an unoccupied spot on the Carson side, gave Damonte Ranch a 23-18 edge.

Carson's Camryn Quilling posted a kill to make it 24-21, but the Mustangs closed the set in their favor.

The Senators play wasn't as clean after the first set and head coach Robert Maw thought the wind got sucked out of the sails after the Senators held their own, but dropped the opener.

"We just didn't terminate the ball as much as we needed too," said Maw. "The girls probably felt like they could have won that first one and it's hard to come off that, knowing that you could have done it, but you didn't."

Front row adjustments

Maw knew facing a tall squad such as Damonte, which has two front row players in White and Alyssa Zurro listed at 6-1, was going to force Carson to make some changes to its blocking scheme.

Rather than leave a setter up front, Maw opted to run two taller blockers and try and dig up any balls that got through the net with four players waiting behind their blockers.

"We had some success with it. It was kind of an experiment tonight," said Maw.

The adjustment worked in the opening set for the Senators, but Damonte Ranch started to push their attacks around the two Carson blockers.

Larkin ended the night with two blocks for the Senators and a team-high eight kills.

Senator sophomore Grace Turner added six kills, including a few in sets one and two that allowed Carson to gain a lead on the scoreboard.

Carson libero Camille Kordonowy was the most successful at getting under Damonte attacks, scooping up 14 digs while six other Senators also recorded a dig.

"We knew they were going to be tough tonight. ... We knew we were going to be gunning for a battle," said Maw.

UP NEXT: Carson falls to 12-10 on the year and 1-2 in Sierra League play with the loss. The Senators will head to California for a weekend tournament before jumping back into league play with Wooster (9-7, 0-2) Tuesday in Carson.


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