The volleyball teams from Rancho Cucamonga and Los Osos competed at the California Challenge hosted by Torrey Pines High School over the weekend and it was mixed success for both.
The event started with pool play on Friday and the Cougars picked up wins over Ironwood (Ariz.) and La Jolla, then lost to Harvard-Westlake.
Saturday Rancho lost to La Costa Canyon in the morning which dropped it into the Silver bracket where the Cougars defeated Ramona and lost to East Lake.
Coach Aaron Flores decided not to play his three top players in the last match and pulled the other starters at various points in that match too, citing the long weekend and upcoming matches this week.
“We got a lot out of it. We played some good teams and got some younger players some experience,” Flores said. “We also played different style teams. It was also nice to play against different girls we don’t know because all these girls here are used to playing with and against each other. We could have played a little better but we’re a better team because of the matches we played.”
Los Osos was a late addition to that field and coach Taylor Galliano was excited about his team’s showing, most notably an upset of the No. 2 seed in his pool Trabuco Hills, which won a CIF title last year in Division 1A.
The Grizzlies last 2-0 to La Costa Canyon but the second set went to 26-24.
“We had always played in the Durango Tournament but I wanted to change it up and go where we could see more Coastal schools and ones we might see down the line in the playoffs,” Galliano said. “It was a little faster pace and some bigger athletes and really helped us playing against that competition.”
The two Baseline League foes play each other on Tuesday. Flores said that during the tournament the two were playing on adjacent courts and his team noticed how well the Grizzlies played. Rancho has owned the rivalry of late so if there was an temptation of looking past Los Osos that might have been remedied.
“That was the best thing that could have happened,” Flores said. “Our girls know they’re going to have to be focused and play well.”