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Seven Warriors named all-league for girls volleyball

Patterson chosen as league coach of the year

Joe Naiman

Village News Reporter

Seven members of Fallbrook High School's 2023 girls volleyball team were given all-league recognition by the Palomar League coaches while Fallbrook coach Chip Patterson was named as the league's coach of the year.

Claire Nordeen was selected to the all-league first team. Aaliyah Arce and Grace Nordeen received second-team berths. Alexa Van Eik, Janice Garcia, Samantha Valdez, and Taylor Thomas were recognized at the honorable mention level.

"I am proud of these seven young ladies," Patterson said.

"It shows their commitment," Patterson said. "They continue to improve and impress."

Claire Nordeen, who is a senior, was the team's setter. She led the team with a .383 hitting percentage and also had 383 assists, 163 digs, 92 kills, 62 serving aces, and 26 solo blocks and 15 assisted blocks for a total of 41.

"Claire was the most valuable player to Fallbrook without a doubt," Patterson said. "If I would have had six Claires, nobody would have beat us."

The Warriors had a 6-4 record during league play which shared third place in the standings. Fallbrook's overall record of 23‑14 includes a first-round loss in the CIF Division II playoffs.

Fallbrook was in the Valley League last year when Nordeen was a junior, and she was also on the all-league first team in 2022. The Valley League coaches also placed Nordeen on the 2021 all-league first team.

The all-league honors are the first for the two second-team players from Fallbrook. Arce is a junior middle blocker. "Aaliyah is a phenomenal young lady, improved tremendously this year," Patterson said.

Arce led the Warriors with 50 blocks consisting of 35 solo and 15 assisted ones. She also had 88 kills, 13 digs, and an assist.

Grace Nordeen is a freshman and played outside hitter. She led the team with 177 kills and her .288 hitting percentage trailed only her sister among 2023 Fallbrook players. Grace Nordeen also had 112 digs, 20 serving aces, 11 assists, seven solo blocks, and one assisted block.

"Grace is going to be an outstanding outside hitter," Patterson said.

Van Eik is a senior and was a defensive specialist. She was a Valley League honorable mention selection last year. During the 2023 season, she had 81 digs, 24 kills, seven assists, and three aces.

Garcia is a junior who played middle blocker. She had 31 solo and 12 assisted blocks for a total of 43, 31 digs, 16 kills, 13 aces, and six assists.

Valdez, a junior, played the libero position for the Warriors. She had 151 digs, 19 assists, eight aces, and a kill.

Thomas is a freshman who was Fallbrook's opposite hitter. Her statistics included 138 digs, 58 kills, 23 aces, 16 assists, seven solo blocks, and two assisted blocks.

Patterson started his Fallbrook High School volleyball career as the Warriors' assistant coach in 2013, when Robin Reese was the head coach. Patterson was the girls head coach from 2014 to 2018 and returned as the head coach in 2021. He has also coached the Fallbrook boys since 2014.

"The players who did perform, they were the ones who helped me win that honor," Patterson said on being named the Palomar League coach of the year. "It's really what your players do."


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