Right Athena Nestoras from the St. Monicas Girls Varsity Volleyball team prepares to spike the ball over the net and past Rachel Cummings from the St. Bernard High School Varsity girls volleyball team at St. Monica's on Wednesday Night November 3rd 2010 as St. Monicas hosted St, Bernard's high school in an el camino real league volley ball game and beat them in three straight games by the scores of 25-6, 25-16, and 25-19. This was the final game of the season for St. Monicas (photo by Morgan Genser)

ST. MONICA — The St. Monica girls’ volleyball team played their last match of the season on Wednesday, never looking back after winning the match’s opening point, sweeping the St. Bernard Vikings in three games: 25-8, 25-16, and 25-19.

Senior outside hitter Emily Fuentes brought the heat as she generated the loudest cheers from fans on all eight of her hard-hitting kills during the match. Senior co-captains Athena Nestoras and Cory LaGuardia also played well for the Mariners and have done a great job leading the St. Monica’s nine seniors all season long.

Third-year head coach at St. Monica, Allison Rivera, went with an all-senior starting lineup. Which fit perfectly with the game’s theme: it was Senior Night for the Mariners; a night for parents and fans of the soon-to-be graduating players to celebrate the success the team has enjoyed this year.

St. Monica looked dominant as they head into the California Interscholastic Federation Southern Section Division 4-AA playoffs, which are scheduled to begin next week. Playoff pairings will be released on Sunday.

“We will look to go far in the playoffs with so many girls graduating this year,” Rivera said. “We are taking the postseason one game at a time but I think we will be solid.”

After starting the season 6-0, the Mariners faced a few bumps on the road but managed to end with a winning 11-4 overall record. They went 5-3 in league play behind regular season winners Serra High School from Gardena, whom the Mariners lost to twice this season.

The Mariners finished the season ranked No. 7 in the CIF-SS Division 4-AA polls, trailing No. 4 Serra. St. Paul of Santa Fe Springs just barely made the polls, rounding out the top 10 at No. 10.


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