PASADENA — Both the St. Francis High and Pasadena Poly boys' volleyball team are headed to the same place — the CIF Southern Section playoffs.
But Wednesday's nonleague tuneup match between the teams showed the Golden Knights' engine to be running pretty smoothly, while the Panthers may yet need some tinkering under the hood, as their struggles down the stretch of the campaign persisted.
St. Francis seemed to catch Poly in a daze in the first game and although the Panthers recovered to make stands in the subsequent stanzas, the Golden Knights were still able to complete the sweep, 25-16, 25-18, 25-21, in the regular-season finale for both teams.
"It's a tuneup," St. Francis Coach Mark Frazee said. "Our guys came out not with that crazed focus, but kind of a relaxed attitude, knowing this game is inconsequential for playoffs, but it matters."
St. Francis (13-5) played without two starters, outside hitter Wesley Coffey and middle Kevin Ernst (coach's decision). As a result, Frazee switched the Golden Knights' scheme to a 6-2, rather than the 6-0 formation they typically favor. The shuffling of personnel didn't seem to bother St. Francis, which got 15 kills from Charles McCarthy and 13 kills from Michael Bacall.