NEWPORT BEACH — In his 26 years at Newport Harbor High, Coach Dan Glenn called this girls' volleyball season an up-and-down one.
A standout starter quit for the first time under Glenn's watch.
Key players dealt with knee and shoulder injuries.
The Sailors finished third in the Sunset League for the first time under Glenn.
Newport Harbor has moved past all of the setbacks. The Sailors are now in position to win their eighth CIF Southern Section title with Glenn at the helm.
Who could have imagined? Glenn and his resilient Sailors did.
The host Sailors defeated Mater Dei, 25-22, 18-25, 25-16, 25-23, in the semifinals of the Division I-AA playoffs on Tuesday night. The gym was packed, fans stood, students from each side chanted throughout.
At the end, the Sailors' faithful rushed the court after Newport Harbor sealed the deal on Kasey Thompson's kill. Thompson and another starter, Cinnamon Sary, have experienced this before, a trip to the section finals.