While it wasnt always pretty, the young Bear volleyball team showed its mettle last Tuesday night at home. After being pushed to a fifth set by visiting Gridley, the Bears found their resolve and claimed their first victory of the season by scores of 25-18, 25-20, 17-25, 14-25, 15-7.
Pierce jumped out to a two set lead behind strong serving and aggressive play that forced the Bulldogs into numerous errors, but as inexperienced teams are prone to do, they lost their concentration in the third and fourth sets and saw the momentum swing in Gridleys favor.
In the huddle, prior to the final set, Coach Lisa Burnum stressed the importance of strong serving, along with the need for energy and being good teammates. Her words resonated, because Pierce did just that.
Sophomore Jamie Figueroa led off the fifth set by serving four aces in six attempts to give the Bears a comfortable 6-0 lead.
Fellow sophomore Laura Rivera and junior Jocelyn Medina also did their part at the service line, ultimately allowing Pierce to put the match away.
It was a big win for the Bears, who previously had suffered a lopsided loss to Orland and seemed to see their confidence wane mid-match against Gridley.
For Burnum, however, it was all part of the teams development as she explained, ” Volleyball is like a roller-coaster, there are ups and downs, but if you communicate and be supportive of one another you can get through it. Im really proud of the resiliency they showed tonight.
Unfortunately statistics from the game were not available on a night where every member of the team contributed to the hard-fought victory.
Pierce (1-1) was scheduled to have played in a scrimmage at Pioneer High School in Woodland on Aug. 18, another scrimmage with Woodland High School at home on Aug. 19, and concluded on Saturday at the Chico Tournament. –