Village News Reporter
A three-game loss March 23 at Gompers Prep Academy gave Bonsall High School’s boys volleyball team a season record of 0-6, but the Legionnaires improved throughout the match.
“They got better and better, and they came together as a team,” Bonsall coach Jesse Stock said.
The Del Lago Firebird Invitational tournament has moved to a Tuesday as Escondido Adventist and Southern California Yeshiva do not participate in athletics on Saturdays, and the first-ever matches for Bonsall took place March 14 at the tournament. The first of those was a 25-5, 25-7 loss to Mission Vista.
“Although they’re a Division II team, we competed,” Stock said.
Since 2013 CIF playoff divisions have been based on competitive balance rather than on school enrollment. Bonsall will be in Division V until the Legionnaires fare well enough to advance to a higher division.
La Jolla Country Day, who was Bonsall’s other March 14 opponent, is in Division III this year. The Torreys won 25-10 and 25-13 sets.
“We gave them a run for their money for sure,” Stock said.
Tournament matches end when a team wins two sets. Dual matches require a team to win three games. The first-ever dual match for Bonsall took place Monday, March 20, at Mountain Empire, and that was also the Legionnaires’ first-ever match against a Division V opponent and Bonsall’s first-ever Pioneer League match. The Redhawks obtained a 25-12, 25-6, 25-12 victory.
“First game we were doing well, but we got in a funk,” Stock said.
That carried over to the second game, but the Legionnaires fared better during the third set.
“We brought ourselves back,” Stock said. “We got back to where we were.”
The second week of the Del Lago Firebird Invitational was played Tuesday, March 21. Bonsall had a two-game loss to Ramona. “That was a Division II team. They were above us,” Stock said. Monarch Academy is in Division V. The Royals won their March 21 match against Ramona by a 25-16, 25-23 score.
“We were two points from our first win from a team that has two years’ experience,” Stock said.
Stock was happy even with the Ramona match. “We did well for playing them. We saw some things we needed to improve,” he said. “We worked on those yesterday and they improved today.”
“Today” refers to Thursday, March 23. The Pioneer League match at Gompers included a new libero.
“We’ve been out players. Our best passer has actually been out,” Stock said. “Two first-string people have been out the last three games.”
That hindered the Legionnaires even more, although it gave substitutes court time. Gompers and Mountain Empire had opened league play against each other March 14, and Gompers obtained a 25‑23, 25‑24, 25‑10 triumph.
“This team totally beat Mountain Empire,” Stock said. “We played definitely better with these guys, so they’ve shown improvement already.”
Gompers defeated Bonsall in 25-8, 25-12, and 25-18 sets. Bonsall scored the first point of the match, which was also the only time the Legionnaires led March 23, but in the first game Bonsall was unable to obtain consecutive points. The Legionnaires had two points in a row multiple times during the second set.
An initial attempt in game 3 to score three points in a row against the Eagles was unsuccessful, but a long rally occurred before Gompers obtained a side out. In all three games that Thursday, the Eagles had set point before Bonsall obtained a side out to score at least once. In the third set, Gompers had a 24-12 lead, but Bonsall then scored six consecutive points before a side out gave the Eagles the match.