WATSONVILLE — The Watsonville Wildcatz continued their dominance over the Pajaro Valley Grizzlies with a three-set sweep, 25-17, 25-7, 25-19 on Thursday night at Watsonville High School.
“I believe that we continue to improve with every game that we play,” said Watsonville head coach Susan Jeske. “We’re getting to that point where we’re starting to gel into a team. As we get more and more games, we’ll continue to get better.”
Pajaro Valley was able to build a slight 9-7 lead in the first set, but Watsonville answered right back and snatched the lead.
The Catz never looked back.
They finished the first set with a 25-17 win and the second set was more of the same.
The home team won the second set by an impressive 18-point margin.
“I thought we would be more competitive in the second set,” said Pajaro Valley coach Jaime Tsuji. “We played so hard in the first set and we stuck with them, but going into the second we just fell off. Right now, I think it’s all mental. Coming into this gym is a hard thing for them to overcome. I just want them to have more confidence in themselves, because they have it. They just need to go out and play a little better.”
Tsuji’s girls came out a little stronger in the third and final set.
Watsonville took an early 6-1 lead, but the Grizzlies fought back and eventually grabbed their first lead of the set at 11-8.
The night, however, belonged to Watsonville.
The Catz gained the lead and never surrendered it. They easily won the set and the match.
“We played well, but it’s never a finished product,” said Jeske. “I believe that there’s always room for improvement and it’s up to the girls to be open to that. That’s how I choose the varsity players. I want them to have potential, to be coachable, if they have the right attitude, if they want to get better. That’s how I pick my players.”
It’s back to the drawing board for the Grizzlies, who will play in the Watsonville tournament today.
The tournament will take place in both the Watsonville and Pajaro Valley gyms and will include more than 20 teams according to Tsuji.
“I think that these losses will be a good thing,” said Tsuji. “It’ll make them a little hungrier when the regular season starts, because we’ve gotten a little beat up. I think that it’s a wake- up call that showed them that they have to catch up. I think that in the end it will make us better.”
Watsonville finished out their three-game home stand 2-1 with wins over Anzar and now Pajaro Valley.
They sit at 3-1 with their only loss coming against a tough Lynbrook squad that they took to five sets.
“I just want them to be proud of how well they’re playing right now,” said Jeske. “We’ve got some work, but I think that no matter what we do, if we just keep playing as a team we’ll keep improving.”
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