Coming into yesterday’s Montview League showdown, Azusa coach Tim Bazyouros knew that his Aztecs had to play a flawless match to walk away with the victory. With the win, the Aztecs sit atop the league standings at 5-0 and 6-1 overall after dismantling the Gladiators 25-20, 27-25, 15-25, 25-23. Gladstone falls to 10-3 and 4-1. But the victory came with price. With Azusa up 2-1 in games senior outside hitter Carmina Ortiz went down with an ankle injury. She would not return. Ortiz finished the match with 13 digs, 12 kills and four aces. “To lose one of your best players in Carmina in that fourth game really worried us,” said Bazyouros. “But, we didn’t get down. We continued to fight hard and other players like Yessenia Celestino picked it up and we were able to win that final game and hopefully we can carry today’s momentum into next weeks big match against La Puente.” Celestino collected 36 digs and two aces. “We played with alot of heart today and I’m proud the way we responded when Carmina went down,” said Bazyouros.
Also leading the Aztecs was junior middle hitter Chrystal Chua with 12 digs, nine kills and six blocks. Junior setter Genesis Maldonado contributed with 25 assists, 15 digs and five kills.

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