La Canada took Grissom's words to heart Thursday as it rallied to
beat Newhall Hart, 22-25, 25-17, 25-20, 27-25 in a nonleague home
Newhall Hart 25 17 20 25
La Canada 22 25 25 27
Gorman 9 kills, Slatter 23 assists.
Turner 15 kills and 6 blocks, Swenson 14 kills and 7 blocks, Kolar 9 kills, Cunningham 46 assists and 5 aces.
The Spartans (6-3) rode a wave of emotion from Tuesday's match,
and combined it with strong efforts from setter Camille Cunningham
and middle blocker Courtney Turner to dispatch the Indians (5-1) in
less than two hours.
"I warned them about having a letdown after a big match like the
other day," Grissom said. "It's easy to have a letdown, but we have
to come out like gangbusters and not fall behind."
The Spartans, ranked No. 5 in CIF Southern Section Division IIIA,
rode the coattails of Cunningham and Turner to win their third
consecutive match. Cunningham produced 46 assists and five aces, and
Turner had 15 kills and six blocks.
Cunningham also provided some nifty serving in the fourth game.
The 5-7 Cunningham, a three-year varsity athlete, had two aces and
five straight service points to give the Spartans a 20-15 lead. Hart
rallied from a 24-20 deficit to take a 25-24 lead before a pair of
Suzanne Swenson kills closed out the win.
"I think we were tired from the [Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy
match]," said Cunningham, an All-CIF Division III second-team
selection last year. "We had to think [Thursday] about putting the
"For some reason, we've been losing the first game. Maybe it takes
time for us to get into a groove."
The Spartans, who finished second in the Rio Hondo League last
season behind Temple City, received 14 kills and seven blocks from
Swenson and nine kills from senior outside hitter KiTing Kolar.
La Canada improved to 2-0 this season against Foothill
League-based squads. They defeated Valencia in four games Sept. 25.
"With Courtney and Suzanne, you have two of the top middle
blockers in the county," Grissom said. "We got the hitting we needed
from Courtney, and the setting from Camille."
Turner, one of eight seniors on the 12-player squad, helped La
Canada recover in the second game. She gave the Spartans a 3-0 lead
on consecutive kills.