Volleyball wins against LA Harbor in straight sets to finish season

Terrel Emerson

The first year for Cerritos College volleyball team head coach Kari Pestolesi ended on a high note.

The Falcons defeated the LA Harbor Seahawks in straight sets (25-15, 25-19, 26-14) Thursday, Nov. 10. The game that also marked the final game for outside hitter Rocio Rojo-Perez.

“Although we had so many losses this year, very unfortunate. But we got a new coach and it was amazing, the girls are amazing. We had a great time, it was fun,” she said.

She is one of the eight second-year players who celebrated Sophomore Night. That is something Pestolesi understood to the fullest.

“It felt a lot better than a loss that’s for sure,” she said with a smile. “No, but we knew we were the better team and it was one of the first matches where the team played like it all the way through.

“I told them this is where they show everybody what they learned this season and they proved they learned how to win.”

One of the sophomores who probably had the best performance was outside hitter Monica Vega.

“It wasn’t my best game because I’ve had a game with more kills, but I had less errors. So it felt pretty good to do many kills and so [few] errors,” she said. “And to do it on Sophomore Night it was pretty exciting.”

Vega had 17 kills on the night. In the team’s first game of the season against the Seahawks she had 13.

“I was thinking it was our last game and we had nothing to lose and we wanted to leave it all on the court,” Vega said.

Her season-high was 22 kills set on Oct. 21 against East LA College.

The win brought an end to a rather disappointing season for the Falcons, who finished the season 10-13.

One bright spot is with the win Cerritos finished 4-4 in conference play during the season. That is something that everyone on the team takes pride in.

“It was pretty big because our season hasn’t been going as planned. We’ve been losing to teams were should’ve beat. We were expected to win this game but it was important to do it [in straight sets],” Vega said.

Pestolesi said, “It just fires me up, everyone on our team is pretty much gone next year so we’ll have a brand new squad […] It’ll be a new program. We have everything going for us here, great facility, we have our own locker room, everything you would want in a program we have here.”

With her first season behind her, Pestolesi learned one big thing in her first season in Falcon blue.

“Everybody’s story is different. You just have to be patient, there is a lot more going on in these kid’s lives aside from volleyball. Anybody can coach volleyball, but when you take the time to get to know them you show them you really care about them as a human being,” she added.