Boys volleyball: Sorenson, Stevenson play winning role in Lake County tourney
The dig of the title match goes to Stevenson setter Will Sorenson. It was one of those stunning ones because it was so hard hit.
Wait a minute. Setters set. They don't dig.
"I used to be a defensive specialist," Sorenson said.
Evidently, his defensive skills are still working. His 36 digs were second on his team Saturday. Of course, his 112 assists led the way.
Stevenson is 15-4 after the Patriots won the Lake County tournament hosted by Lakes and Grant over two days. Stevenson tripped up Lake Forest 25-18, 25-17 to take home the trophy at Grant and complete a 5-0 weekend.
"We are a young team," Sorenson said. "But we work well together. We have good team cohesion."
Stevenson coach Eric Goolish notes his defense has been sharp this season.
"We are working with two sophomores," Goolish said of Gavin Meng and Justin Ross. "Our defense has been so much better. That makes us a more complete team."
The first set was close with the Scouts. George Lie went in to serve for the Pats, and Leo Chen had two of his team-high 11 kills during a rally that changed momentum.
"We are lot more defensive-oriented this year," Chen said. "Our passing is a lot better. I had a pretty good day hitting the ball."
Chen also showed he can serve the ball well. Meng pounded one of his 7 kills, and it was 19-11 in favor of Stevenson.
Lake Forest pulled within 19-16 in set two. Chen was again on the service line when Matt Cliffer and Ming took turns at the net to increase the lead.
Chen led the Stevenson attack with 43 kills in the tourney. Ming and Cluffer had 29 and 26, respectively. Alex Bien had 11 serving aces to lead the way. Cliffer's 13 blocks was tops on the team, as were Lie's 49 digs.
Carmel won 4 of 5 matches, rallying past Zion-Benton 20-25, 25-22, 25-17 to capture third place. Jackson Ptasienski had 55 kills and 32 digs for the Corsairs (10-4). Setter Jordan DeGuzman notched 43 assists, and Shayne Henderson had 57 digs.
Mundelein (9-10) won 3 of 5 matches. Marc Rey led the attack with 35 kills, while Abram Nazario added 32 kills. Rey's 15 blocks were key. Libero Ben Arebalo notched 102 digs, and setter Steven Miritello had 89 assists.
Improving Lakes stopped neighbor Antioch 26-24, 20-25, 25-16. Clayton Nix had 13 kills, and Connor Clowers added 11 kills for the Eagles (7-12), who went 2-3 in the tourney.