Turlock reigned over Buhach Colony High on Wednesday night in the Bulldogs home league opener for the Central California Conference.
Anchored by one of the most talented volleyball teams in the Section, Turlock (19-2 overall, 2-0 CCC) head coach Amber Castillon led her lady Bulldogs to a convincing 3-0 sweep of the Thunder, [25-10, 25-15 and 25-15].
“We had some more intensity than we usually do because we heard Buhach had a few stronger players and so we came in with that fire,” said Turlock senior Emily Romo.
“Every win is important. The girls are playing really well and we are just trying to keep our quick tempo and try to reduce errors,” said Castillon after her team committed only seven errors for the game. “We moved the ball around and the middle blockers were great.”
Turlock is off to their best start in over 10 years. After just 21 games, the Bulldogs have already accumulated 19 victories. Last season the team tallied 22 wins for the whole year.
Sophomore Jadyn Tubbs was sensational once again, notching a game-high 16 kills to go along with her two aces.
“We have been so successful so far because the culture changed the moment we stepped on the court. It’s because of the coaches and the environment change that has helped us be successful,” said Tubbs.
Romo tallied 15 of the team’s 39 kills and sophomore Julia Handy finished with a game-high 35 assists to go with her two blocks and two kills.
“I have to give props to Julia Handy, she did a great job,” said Tubbs of her setter.
The team started off the year winning 14 straight before losing two of their next three, but since then, the Bulldogs have surged into a four game winning streak, including two consecutive league wins.
“To win you have to play at your level every game no matter what the opposition’s level is, you can’t drop down to their level no matter what,” said Romo.
In Wednesday’s game, Turlock came out blazing, taking a 13-7 lead in the first game over Buhach before forcing them to call a timeout.
It didn’t work. Instead, Turlock surged to a 12-3 run and won the first game by 15 points.
The stage was set and Turlock, once again, crushed Buhach in game two, winning by 10 before a close third game rattled the home team.
“We need to come in the next game with the same intensity we started with and end with the same intensity through the rest of the season… we can’t let up,” said Romo.
Turlock lagged Buhach in game three, the only deficit of the night, by a score of 3-9 at one point before the Bulldogs decided to play their game. Turlock went on a 22-6 run after that point and cruised into their second league win of the year.
“We had a little too much confidence in the beginning of the third since the other games were lopsided so we did not play our game, but we got back into it after a few more hits,” said Romo of the team’s hiccup in the third game.
“Mentally we do that a lot, we slip up sometimes so we are looking forward to more CCC games where we know we need to stay in the game mentally,” said Tubbs.
Turlock’s next game will be at home against Atwater at 6 p.m. Monday.