VOLLEYBALL: Aztecs capture first place at San Diego tournament

By BETO HOYOS

After a rough stretch of losses, the Pima Community College volleyball team won the San Diego City College tournament Sept. 27.

“It was the first time this season that we really believed in each other even when we faltered a bit,” Pima head coach Dan Bithell said. “It was a great team effort all day.”

Pima first defeated two California teams, Alan Hancock College and Cerritos College, in three sets each. The wins earned Pima a No. 1 seed heading into the finals.

The Aztecs later faced tougher opponents but kept winning.

“Everyone worked their butts off and we stayed together as a team the whole time,” sophomore Alexis Ammerman said.

Pima defeated a California team, Cuestas College, and conference foe Chandler-Gilbert Community College to advance to the finals.

The Aztecs faced the host school in the final match, and defeated San Diego City College in four sets to win the tournament.

“Tremendously exciting and I am very proud of all the girls’ efforts,” Bithell said.

Sophomore Kaysee Pilgrim was named to the All-Tournament team.

On Sept. 24, the Aztecs mounted rallies but lost in four sets to Central Arizona College at West Campus.

They fell behind early in the first set, giving up five straight points. On Central’s game point, they rallied with four straight points of their own but fell 25-19.

They also trailed early in the second set, but rallied to win 25-15 with the help of freshman Angelina Chavez and sophomores Nykole Adun and Liz Mata.

The Aztecs tried to ride the second set momentum in the third set but an early lead did not last long. After being tied 10-10, Central outscored the Aztecs 10-3 to take the lead for good.

In the final set, the Aztecs allowed seven straight points in opening play. They got as close as four points but ultimately dropped the final set and the game.

Pilgrim finished the match with 10 kills and eight blocks. Freshmen Andrea Burnett and Jamie Holliday each had eight kills.

On Sept. 17, the Aztecs lost to Scottsdale Community College in three sets.

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Sophomore Andrea Burnett prepares to strike the ball. (Nick Meyers/Aztec Press)

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