Sea Kings run Newport

Girls' Volleyball

CdM motivated by not-so-subtle gear worn by Sailors and win in four in the Battle of the Bay.

September 17, 2011|By Matt Szabo
(Kevin Chang / Daily…)

NEWPORT BEACH — Nobody needs extra motivation before the Battle of the Bay girls' volleyball match.

But when Newport Harbor High ran onto its home court Saturday night in blue T-shirts that said "We run this town" in white letters, rival Corona del Mar definitely noticed.

"We don't look at their shirts like, 'Oh, they think they're going to beat us,'" CdM senior libero Mary McKennon said. "We look at their shirts like they want to fight us. It's going to be a big battle no matter what … [but] it definitely fired us up."

Jay-Z's accompanying hip-hop song played in the background as the teams warmed up. During the hook of the song, Rihanna asks, "Who's gonna run this town tonight?"

It wasn't the Sailors.

Corona del Mar rallied to win the rivalry match for the second straight year, 25-27, 25-22, 25-20, 25-19, in front of a packed house.


"Everyone did great," senior middle blocker Britton Taylor said after the Sea Kings used a balanced effort to beat their rivals, starting a streak of their own after winning the Battle of the Bay last year for the first time since 2004.

Freshman outside hitter Hayley Hodson had a match-high 15 kills for Corona del Mar (4-0), and junior outside Grace Kennedy pounded down 13 of her own. Senior middle blocker Chrissy Watson also had a stellar match with eight kills and five blocks.

It was the second straight significant victory for the Sea Kings, ranked No. 2 in the CIF Southern Section Division I-A coaches' poll. CdM had beaten divisional foe Laguna Beach, No. 3 in I-A, in four sets on Thursday.

First-year CdM Coach Marissa Booker played under Coach Dan Glenn at Newport Harbor before graduating in 1999. She found time right before the match to come over and give quick hugs to Glenn and assistant Taylor Govaars, but said she wasn't caught up in the hype.

"This is just a match that's a part of the process," Booker said. "Every part of the process I want them coming out and playing hard, so that's what we did … You know, we treated this just like every other [match]. That's a mentality we went in with. We've been setting goals for ourselves, and obviously this is one of our important goals, to come out strong and prepared in this [match]. We did and we battled through some errors, which was really crucial for us."

One error in Glenn's mind was his team wearing those shirts to begin with.

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