The sisters are even as Menlo girls' volleyball tops Castilleja


It was payback time for Menlo School girls' volleyball coach Atlee Hubbard as her Knights bounced back from an earlier loss to Castilleja and rallied in the third set to defeat the Gators, 25-23, 21-25, 26-24, 25-14, in West Bay Athletic League (Foothill Division) action Tuesday night in Atherton.

The victory gives Hubbard a split in the season series with her sister, Castilleja head coach Tracie Meskell.

"Atlee's team played better defense but our hitters were not as effective as they could have been," said Meskell, who is still awaiting the birth of her first child, who was due last Saturday. "Our defense and passing was strong for once and we could have won in three since we were up in the first and third games, but were unable to pull it out."

Menlo (4-2, 18-6) remained mathematically alive for the WBAL title, but the Knights still trail first-place Sacred Heart Prep by two games. Castilleja fell to 3-3 (16-11).

The Knights held strong in the third set, rallying from a 22-16 deficit by playing nearly error-free. Maddy Frappier finished with a team-high 15 kills and two blocks for Menlo. Sophomore outside hitter Maddie Huber logged seven kills, 11 digs and four aces while freshman setter Elisa Merten had 25 assists and a pair of aces. Sophomore libero Melissa Cairo came away with 19 digs and Morgan Dressel had seven kills and four blocks.

Hannah Boland led Castilleja with eight kills and six blocks while Lindsay Wang added seven kills and 20 digs.

Sacred Heart Prep, meanwhile, remained unbeaten in the WBAL at 6-0 with a 25-12, 25-17, 25-20 victory over host Mercy-Burlingame at Serra High on Tuesday. Jesse Ebner produced 12 kills for the Gators (17-5 overall) while fellow senior Sarah Daschbach added nine kills and three aces. Payton Smith, a 6-foot-1 junior, had a match-high five blocks to go with seven kills.

In the PAL Bay Division, Menlo-Atherton strengthened its hold on first place with an easy 25-6, 25-13, 25-20 victory over visiting Mills. Katelyn Doherty had seven kills, five digs and two blocks for the Bears (9-0, 17-4) while fellow junior Ali Spindt added nine kills, three digs and nine assists.

In the SCVAL De Anza Division, sophomore Erica Johnston produced 16 kills for Gunn (1-7, 11-13) in a tough 26-24, 25-22, 17-25, 20-25, 15-10 loss to host Los Altos.

In the WBAL Skyline Division, Pinewood honored its seniors during a pre-match ceremony before their final home appearance before they went out and posted a 25-11, 25-13, 25-18 victory over ICA. Senior Kandace Korver led the way with 12 kills, six digs and three aces with senior Jenn Bodine adding eight kills. Senior setter Adrienne Whitlock provided 22 assists and six digs for the Panthers (4-5, 8-6).

In Portola Valley, host Priory improved to 5-1 in the Skyline Division (16-3 overall) with a 25-12, 25-15, 25-18 sweep of visiting Crystal Springs-Uplands. Priory remains tied for first place in the division with Harker. Brianna Willhite had 18 kills, Alyssa Guttman-Green had 31 assists, and Clara Johnson had seven kills to go with five aces for Priory.

In another Skyline Division match, Eastside Prep fell to Harker, 25-18, 25-12, 25-10. Harker improved to 7-1 in league.

Girls' golf

One day after wrapping up the WBAL (Foothill Division) title, Castilleja completed a perfect regular season with a 220-274 dual-match victory over host Notre Dame-San Jose on Tuesday at San Jose Muni.The Gators finished 10-0 in league and 11-0 overall.

Castilleja freshmen Chloe Sales was the medalist with a 4-over 40. Sophomore co-captain Caroline Debs shot a solid 42, sophomore Ellie Zales added a very consistent 43, junior co-captain Taylor Wilkerson carded a 45, and sophomore Gaelin Bernstein wrapped up the scoring with a 50.

In other WBAL golf action Tuesday:

Chandler Wickers chipped in for an eagle-3 on the five-5 ninth hole to carry Menlo School to a 225-226 victory over host Harker in dual-match action at Los Lagos Golf Course in San Jose. Patricia Hung from Harker was the medalist, shooting a 1-over 35 on the front nine. Wickers and Caroline Broderick both shot 39 and Ellie Still contributed with a clutch 47. These teams will meet again next Monday in a rematch of a rainout at Menlo Country Club at 3 p.m. Menlo and Harker are both 5-4 in league.

At Crystal Springs GC, Sacred Heart Prep (7-3) wrapped up its regular season with a 233-295 victory over host Mercy-Burlingame. SHP seniors Shelby Soltau (43), Kennedy Shields (43), Rachael Henry (44) and Michaela Hutter (53) all contributed to the victory.

Next up for Castilleja, Menlo and Sacred Heart Prep is the 18-hole WBAL Championships on Oct. 26 at Poplar Creek Golf Course in San Mateo. Teams that shoot 435 or better will advance to the CCS finals on Nov. 1 at Rancho Canada East in Carmel Valley. Individuals can advance with a score of 87 or better.

Girls' tennis

Menlo School cleared perhaps its final hurdle to yet another undefeated league season with a 7-0 victory over host Harker in a West Bay Athletic League (Foothill Division) match on Tuesday in San Jose.

"We squeaked it out in doubles, which is a good thing," said Menlo coach Bill Shine. "Harker always plays us tough at their place."

The Knights improved to 6-0 in league (11-3 overall) after sweeping the singles in straight sets. Harker put up a fight in doubles, forcing a third set in each match before falling. Menlo is gunning for its 18th straight league crown this season, having won 184 straight league matches since the start of the 1994 season.

Boys' water polo

Junior goalie Will Runkel came up with 17 saves and Bret Hinrichs tallied three goals as Sacred Heart Prep topped host Menlo-Atherton, 11-5, in a nonleague match on Tuesday. The Gators (10-8) raced to a 5-0 first-quarter lead and coasted from there. An 8-1 halftime lead made it academic at that point. Zach Churukian, Kyle Koenig and Harrison Enright all tallied twice for SHP, while Emery Welton led the Bears (9-10) with three goals.

In the SCVAL De Anza Division, host Gunn dropped a 13-10 overtime decision to Mountain View on Tuesday despte four goals from Ari Wayne and three from Tyler Wilson. The Titans fell to 5-4 in league as they were able to convert only three of 16 man advantages. Thomas Burch of Mountain View tied the match at 9 at the end of regulation and finished with four goals.

Girls' water polo

Gunn senior Elizabeth Anderson surpassed the 100-goal plateau for the season by leading the Titans to a 12-8 victory over host Wilcox on Tuesday in SCVAL De Anza Division action.

Anderson scored three goals and now has 102 for the season. Her sister, Caroline, also tallied three goals while Maggie Sockness and Missy Barr tallied two goals each for the Titans (8-1, 15-6).

— Keith Peters/Palo Alto Online

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