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Girls' Volleyball: Eagles sweep Mustangs again

Estancia, led by Griffith sisters, beats rival Costa Mesa in three straight sets for the second time in league.

October 10, 2012|By Matt Szabo
  • Estancia High's Emma Griffith, right, battles at the net against Costa Mesa's Jayme Krohnfeldt in an Orange Coast League match on Wednesday.
Estancia High's Emma Griffith, right, battles… (KEVIN CHANG, Daily…)

COSTA MESA — At 6-foot-3, Estancia High junior middle blocker Abby Griffith towers over much of the competition on the volleyball court.

On Wednesday at Costa Mesa High, Griffith and her 6-foot freshman sister, Emma, made sure the Eagles once again stood tall against the rival Mustangs.

The Griffith sisters combined for 17 kills as Estancia beat Costa Mesa for the second time in Orange Coast League play. They again swept, 25-12, 25-18, 25-18.

The second and third sets were competitive, but not enough to stop the Eagles from beating the Mustangs for the 18th straight time.

"I think Mesa, for their seniors, it's their last [match against Estancia]," said Abby Griffith, who had seven kills and three service aces. "I think they really tried hard, and it was really fun to play a competitive match. I was excited for our seniors to have a good last match against Mesa."

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Griffith is relatively new to the rivalry. This is her first year playing for the Eagles, after she transferred from Orange Lutheran in the middle of her sophomore year.

Her mother, Jenny, was on hand to watch the action, and she is more familiar with the other big Newport-Mesa rivalry. Jenny Griffith, then known as Jenny Evans, was a star outside hitter at Newport Harbor High and later UCLA. She was named national Co-Player of the Year by Volleyball Monthly her senior year, when she helped the Sailors win the 1987 CIF Southern Section Division 5-A title by defeating rival CdM in five games. The Sailors made the state Division 1 title match, where they fell to Irvine. Jenny later captured an NCAA title at UCLA in 1990, when she was a second-team All-American.

Jenny's husband, Brian, was a punter at LSU. But their daughters are well on their way to shining athletically on their own terms.

They've mixed well with the team's other pieces. Emma, an outside hitter like her mother, had a match-high 10 kills in Wednesday's match. Estancia junior Chloe Davis and sophomore Eliza Jason each had four kills. Jason's older sister, senior Gianna Jason, had three kills and two solo blocks, and junior Jackie Hubbard tied for the team lead with three aces.

Estancia senior libero Charlotte Gaitan had 11 digs and senior setter Ilene Umansky consistently set up her teammates, helping the Eagles (7-8, 4-2 in league) remain in third place in league. They are on pace for their third CIF playoff berth in Coach Paul Muñoz's three seasons.

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