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Hilmar prepares for playoff match against Los Banos
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Hilmar High’s volleyball team had a pretty good run in the Trans Valley League this season. With the exception of TVL champs Escalon High, the Yellowjackets defeated each league opponent that stepped onto the court, earning them a spot in the Division IV SJS playoffs as the 11th seed. On Tuesday, Hilmar will travel to Los Banos for the first round of the post-season in what is sure to be an exciting match.

“Their confidence is at a good level,” Hilmar’s head coach Patti Harris said of her team. “They know what they have to do as a team to get to the next level. I think it’s going to be a good game.”

Tuesday will mark the second match between the ‘Jackets and Tigers who met in September during the pre-season. Hilmar walked away with the victory but Harris doesn’t factor that win into her team’s preparation. Instead, the ‘Jackets are focusing on their fundamentals and working on their consistency —an ever important attribute in the post-season.

“Right now we’re trying to fine tune the offense but we’re also working on defense and our blocking,” Harris said.

Los Banos’ biggest threat comes in the form of Jade Fachin, a force at the net who helped lead the Tigers to their undefeated season. If Hilmar is to advance to the second round it will have to neutralize Fachin while simultaneously applying constant pressure to the rest of the Los Banos squad.

“The girls really need to play as a team and focus on defense,” Harris said. “Defensively, they need to be quick on their feet and pick everything up.”

Tuesday’s match will be played at 7p.m. in Los Banos.