BAKERSFIELD -- The Orange Coast College women's volleyball program had very emotional week of volleyball, on and off the court, as the Pirates topped Mt. San Antonio College in five sets on Tuesday before falling in straight sets to top-seeded Bakersfield on Saturday.
The week kicked off with a hard-fought, five-set win for the ninth-seeded Pirates as they played at No. 8 Mt. San Antonio College.
Coast (20-6) jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the match with a pair of nail-biting wins over the Mounties, 25-22, 25-23.
Mt. SAC (20-7) battled back to even the match with wins in the third set (25-15) and fourth set (25-17) to push the season for both teams down to a winner-take-all fifth set to 15 points.
There, Coast jumped out to a crucial 7-1 lead as the strong play from Sara Enright (17 kills, 23 digs), Paige Cutwright (14 kills, seven digs, three blocks) and Summer Hanks (11 kills, 12 assists, three blocks) began to wobble the Mounties' defense.
But, back came Mt. SAC as the Mounties used a 9-3 run to cut to within two at 10-8. Allison Whitman and Michelle Walkers each had 16 kills, while JJ Quarrels added 14 to go along with 18 digs.
Coast, thanks to strong passing from setters Amanda Cueva (32 assists) and Ellie Winter (17 assists) as well as incredible play from libero Emily Payne (37 digs), the Pirate regrouped and held off the hosts the rest of the way.
The win earned Coast a trip to Bakersfield to take on the top-seeded Renegades (22-1) with a trip to the state tournament on the line.
It wasn't to be for the Pirates, who were swept by BC, 25-23, 25-12, 25-20. Coast played with heavy hearts on Saturday night, just one day after the passing of longtime assistant coach, Adrian Delgado, who died on Friday morning from liver cancer at the age of 56.