The Gauls march on to semifinals after a 3-0 clean sweep


Matthew Gaw ('21)

Webb students pack the stands and cheer on the Gauls.

“V—W—” the crowd chants as the ball is set into the air. The fans watches in anticipation with their single index fingers held up in the air, signaling match-point. Emily Arias (‘20) jumps up high into the air and spikes the ball as the crowd shouts “—S!” 

The ball makes its way onto an open spot of the opposition court. Players rush frantically to receive the ball, but it is too late, as the ball hits the ground with a “thump.” The crowd erupts into a mixture of cheering, clapping and stomping; players and fans rush onto the court to huddle and celebrate this thrilling moment.  

It was a night of overwhelming joy and excitement as VWS volleyball produced yet another electrifying performance at the gym to beat the La Quinta Aztecs and continue their remarkable CIF run. 

Not only did this win bring them to the final four of the CIF playoffs, but it also booked them a spot in the State Championships. Webb certainly showed its priority for the game after a cancellation of community dinner allowed students to pack the stands once again.

The Gauls were blazed from the start with an incredible first set performance by co-captain Lydia Toy (‘20) and Chiara Filart (‘21). Following their incredible performance, fans on the bleachers and gym floor – rocking their all-black apparel – burst into a variety of chants, songs, and cheers to show their support for the girls. 

The second set began with the Gauls once again taking an early lead. The lead got as high as 12-2 until a shift in momentum favored the Aztecs. A series of strong spikes from the Gauls were met with acrobatic saves and brilliant receiving from the opponents. The Aztecs suddenly got themselves back into the game and tied at 18-18. 

As nervousness and uncertainty built up on the stands, players showed their fans just what they were capable of as they bounced back to retake the lead with an array of powerful offensive plays. Sophia Bachoura’s (‘22) ace sealed off the second set with a nail-biting 25-20 victory. 

In the third set, the Gauls maintained the lead while the Aztecs trailed closely behind. At one point, the game was tied at 14-14, but the Gauls got their heads back in the game and extended their lead. A flurry of well-placed sets and strong spikes helped the Gauls pull away and finish their opponents off with a 25-12 victory. 

Following the game, Chiara said, “This is the best volleyball we’ve played all season. I honestly expected it to go up to the fourth or fifth set but our team just got it done!” 

Savanna Cespedes (‘22) said, “I think getting into semi-finals, state, and breaking the record has just been overwhelming. It’s crazy.”

When asked about the crowd, Chiara said, “It made a huge difference. When we got out of the team room and saw the whole stands packed and everyone with the blackout, we were so happy and excited.” 

“It really brings us a lot more energy on the court to know that our whole school is behind us.” Savanna added. 

Mr. Caddy, head coach of VWS volleyball, said, “Our girls are flying right now.” 

We wish our varsity girls best of luck as they travel to Garden Grove High School next Saturday, hoping to continue remarkable CIF journey and hopefully bring home Webb’s first-ever CIF volleyball championship.