Volleyball is similar to basketball in a variety of ways, the least of which is it involves a net.
When playing hoops it certainly helps to be tall and athletic, and it never hurts if you’re also able to get off the floor.
In fact, some of the best volleyballers were also involved in basketball, most notably Hall of Fame center Wilt Chamberlain and Keith Erickson, who toiled as a forward for UCLA on NCAA championship teams in 1964 and 1965, and later played in the NBA for several teams including the Lakers.
A one-sided affair took place last Friday as visiting Claremont High blistered and battered Glendale in a Pacific League boys’ match, all the while rubbing salt into an open wound.
In short and controlled fashion, the Nitros were handled with relative ease by powerful Claremont, which prevailed, 25-17, 25-9, 25-11.
There are instances when no matter what a club tries to do and hopes to accomplish, it’s not going to change the end result. That was the case for the Nitros.
It began early and lasted throughout as the Wolfpack served well in the opening game, and continued doing so over the next two games.
Claremont, which tied for the league crown last year, came out and served five aces.
And if there was any doubt about Claremont’s intent and desire, it never wavered.
The Wolfpack captured 14 of the first 16 points and appeared as though they were going to run and hide, but the Nitros (3-4 and 0-2 in league) pulled together and closed the margin to 18-5. The rally was hardly enough to offset the commanding early lead.
Glendale and Claremont divided the first six points of the second game, but once again the Wolfpack (11-4 and 2-0 in league) went on a sustained run and ended the stanza strong.
In the final game, Claremont and Glendale traded points, but the Wolfpack went on another scoring blitz, and was in control, 11-3.
In another match, Chaminade required four games to defeat host St. Francis in a Mission League contest Thursday, winning by scores of 25-13, 19-25, 25-17, 28-26.
Serving errors were just one culprit as the Golden Knights closed the affair by turning in a dozen miscues.
The Eagles (4-4 and 1-4 in league) were on the verge of a fifth game when Chaminade’s T.J. Henzgen tied it at 25-25.
From there, it became moot as the Eagles went on a 3-1 run and finished the match.
St. Francis (4-3 and 1-3 in league) was paced by Nick De Cesare’s 14 kills. Wesley Coffey had 13 winners, and setter Chris Thompson finished with 39 assists.