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Eagles soar to Nor Cal semis
TC volley
Madison Yagi of Turlock Christian dishes up a one handed assist to a teammate during the second set of Tuesdays opening round of the CIF Division-VI Nor Cal Tournament. - photo by EDDIE RUIZ / The Journal

The Turlock Christian High volleyball team is moving on to the Northern California State Tournament semifinal after defeating Fall River in the opening round of the CIF Division-VI Nor Cal State Tournament, 3-1, on Tuesday.

This marks the fourth straight postseason victory this year for the TC Eagles.

It was a jittery home start from the Eagles after they dropped their first set, but they quickly turned it around to win the next three, (23-25, 30-28, 25-23 and 25-18).

“I think we had a bit of a hangover but once we settled down and got over being Section champs, now we need to play our game and did just fine,” said TC head coach Ashlee Towns.

TC, who seemed to only improve as the year progressed, just needed a wakeup call in the opening minutes—and Fall River gave them that.

As the number three seed, TC was coming in expecting to win against the sixth seeded Fall River, but the Bulldogs had something else in mind.  

“It was intimidating at first. Overall it was okay. It wasn’t our best game,” Towns said. “We were struggling with our intensity for a little bit but overall they came back and dug deep till the end and that’s a sign of a mature team and a good team that can play with their backs against the wall.”

After dropping the first TC, which was led by multiple stars for the match, dug deep in the next game after both squads exchanged point after point. The Eagles came away from the high-scoring affair victorious, 30-28.

An arsenal of attacks from Tori Viera, Madison and Mikayla Yagi helped the team out tremendously along with the help of Kaylene Baskin, Abbie Morelli and Nicky Sanders.

A solid team effort in the next two sets was enough to help the home team secure a spot in the semifinal matchup against Anderson Valley.

“I just told them that they need to want this and just as bad as they wanted it in Davis and not to let it be a hangover,” Towns said. “It’s exciting that we have a banner, but now we need to chase something bigger like the Nor Cal tournament.”

Mikayla Yagi finished with a team high in kills (14) while Viera and Sanders each added on nine kills of their own. Sanders added three blocks to her stat line.

Madison Yagi finished with a team leading 30 assists and five aces. Baskin added on five aces of her own and Morelli finished with 22 digs.

“I am proud of them but I expect better games from them and I know we are capable of it,” Towns added. “I reiterated this is our game to defend and right now since we have home court tonight we have to take advantage of it because we might have to go on the road next time.”

TC will travel to Anderson Valley High for the semifinal match which is scheduled to start at 7 p.m. Saturday.