Wilson passes Millikan – The562.org


The562’s coverage of Long Beach Volleyball in the 2022-23 school year is sponsored by Misty May-Treanor and the Dream in Gold Foundation.

The562’s coverage of Long Beach Wilson Athletics is sponsored by Joel BitonioClass of 2009.

The562’s coverage of Millikan athletics in the 2022-23 school year is sponsored by Curtis Boyer.

The Moore League Women’s Volleyball game between Wilson and Millikan on Thursday was certainly a run game, but in clutch moments the Bruins were the more consistent team as they ran away with a 22 -25, 26-24, 25-22, Victory 25-20.

The win puts Wilson in second place in the league and puts Millikan in a tie for third place with Long Beach Poly.

“We went to Vegas last weekend for the Durango tournament and that trip really bonded us as a team,” said Wilson Libero Sydney Scott. “Before this trip, it was a bit fragile and we weren’t all together. Today, that really showed in our commitment to each other and our commitment to this team and winning. Even when Millikan ran a few errands, we were able to band together and know we could rely on each other.

Scott led Wilson’s defense with 12 digs and a pair of service aces while junior outside hitter Chloe Pravednikov had 24 kills on 62 hits with two aces. Senior Allanah Smith filled the stat sheet with 20 kills and 13 digs for the Bruins. Central blocker Emiya Green was on four blocks.

“When we were leading we were trying to minimize our mistakes and I think that really helped us,” Pravednikov said.

Thursday was also Senior Night at Wilson for a large class of Bruins, and the crowd was one of the biggest of the year.

“Playing in a high school gym, there’s nothing quite like it,” Scott said. “The energy we got from our drums, our cheerleaders, and all of our sports teams that showed up… When you play well, that’s just the icing on the cake. It’s about all my senior team-mates and I’m glad we were able to pull it off by regaining our energy at the end.

The first set featured a handful of tied scores before Wilson took the lead, but Millikan went on a 5-0 run to level the score again at 17-17. A trio of hard hitting from outside hitter Elle Lundahl gave the Rams a lead and two errors from Wilson in the stretch earned Millikan a 25-22 victory.

Lundahl and Aaliyah Fasavalu both had eight kills to lead the Millikan offense. Libero Brittany Mendoza had 10 recoveries.

The second set was full of mistakes from both teams. In fact, Wilson made four errors in the first five points to fall behind. However, the Bruins bounced back and even went 10-10 with the help of Millikan’s errors. The Rams began to pull away and were leading 17-13 when Pravednikov sparked a rally with a winning streak.

“She was almost unstoppable,” Wilson’s coach Gerald Aquiningoc said of Pravednikov. “(Millikan) has little opposites, which kind of helped us.”

With the score tied at 24-24 in the second set, a Pravednikov kill earned Wilson a set point and a Sample Agrupis ace gave the Bruins a 26-24 win to even things up.

“Expanding our offense is key against a big block like this and then keeping them out of the system was important,” Millikan coach Ashleigh Atsaros said. “That’s the key against these kinds of teams. When they’re out of the system, we can jump on them, but I don’t think we did enough of that in the second, third and fourth sets.

Once again, the third set started with these two teams tied on points, but Wilson started to gain the upper hand feeding in Pravednikov and Smith. Smith’s back-to-back kills gave the Bruins a lead they wouldn’t lose. Wilson led until 21-12, and although Millikan stormed back to fend off nine set points, Smith’s kill put the Bruins ahead 25-22.

“When we focus on our first contact with the ball, get into the system and pass that ball into zone three, we can execute whatever we want with clashes,” Aquiningoc said. “We refocused on service and reception and the rest took care of itself.”

Wilson led for most of the third set and took the 25-20 win while riding the momentum and emotion of the night.

“We knew we had to win this game for our seniors even though we weren’t one,” junior Pravednikov said. “It’s obviously going to mean a lot and they’ll never forget that game.”

Wilson (15-9, 6-1) takes on Jordan and Compton next week while Millikan (9-4, 4-3) takes on Compton and Cabrillo.

Video clips of this match will be available soon.


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