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Carmichael Times

Mavericks lose on Senior Night to Dixon, rebound on road

Apr 29, 2022 12:00AM ● By By Shaun Holkko, sports editor

CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA (MPG) – The Mesa Verde High School boy’s varsity volleyball team was swept by Dixon on Tuesday, April 26, in what was Senior Night for the Mavericks.

The Mavericks (14-12, 7-3 Golden Empire League) rebounded well from their loss to the Rams (15-1, 10-0), winning their final two matches of the regular season on the road against Mira Loma (8-13, 5-5) on Wednesday and at Woodland (0-9, 0-9) on Thursday. Mesa Verde beat Mira Loma 3-1 and swept Woodland 3-0.

Three players were honored on Senior Night: Defensive specialist Hoang (Doni) Nguyen, captain and setter Jovoni Raya and DS Mikhael Wilson. The nine other players on the roster are expected to return next season.

The Rams dominated Tuesday in Citrus Heights, taking all three sets and sweeping the Mavericks. Dixon got in a slug fest with Mesa Verde in the first set, needing extra time to secure the set point 27-25. The Rams decisively won the second and third sets, 25-19 and 25-17 respectively.

RELATED: Dixon sweeps Pioneer on Senior Night for 14th straight victory

Junior middle blocker Gabriel Braga led the Mavericks in kills against Dixon with nine. Braga and freshman libero/outside hitter Everado Jimenez each had one serving ace. Raya contributed three solo blocks to lead Mesa Verde.

The Mavericks had four players tally digs in the double digits. Jimenez had a team-high 18 digs with seven dig errors. Raya recorded 22 assists on 83 ball handling attempts with only four ball handling errors. Jimenez also led the team in receptions recording 19 with only three reception errors.

Mesa Verde fans must’ve thought they were suffering from déjà vu on Wednesday, because for the second straight match, the Mavericks lost the first set 27-25, this time to the Matadors. However, Mesa Verde was unphased and responded to the adversity well. The Mavericks won the next three sets in a row to secure the match victory: 25-21, 25-13 and 25-19.

Freshman MB Mathew Hernandez-Garcia recorded 10 kills on 43 attempts with seven errors for Mesa Verde. Freshman OH/MB Eddie Montepeque led the Mavericks in aces with four on 20 attempts and only one error. Hernandez-Garcia and Montepeque each had one solo block. Braga tallied two assisted blocks and Montepeque had one, as they each led the way with two total blocks.

The Mavericks had four players tally digs in the double digits for the second game in a row. Jimenez had a team-high 18 digs with only three errors. Raya had 29 assists on 122 attempts with three errors. Four players from Mesa Verde had over 10 receptions, with Jimenez recording 20 on his own and only three reception errors.

RELATED: Rams keep rolling, extend win streak to lucky No. 13

Mesa Verde cruised to victory lane in the first two sets at Woodland on Thursday in the team’s regular season finale. The Mavericks won the first two sets 25-16 and 25-15. However, the winless Wolves refused to go down without a fight. Mesa Verde would need extra time, but they took down Woodland 27-25 in the final set, as the Mavericks were on the right side of that score after two straight games of being on its wrong end.

Hernandez-Garcia led Mesa Verde in kills with eight on 14 attempts and one error. Montepeque recorded a team-high eight aces on 18 attempts with three errors. Braga and Hernandez-Garcia each had two total blocks, all four were solo. Hernandez-Garcia also had one blocking error.

Wilson had eight digs to lead the Mavericks with only one error. Raya led Mesa Verde in assists once again with 22 on 51 attempts and five errors. Jimenez tallied a team-high 11 receptions with three errors.

With an unbeaten record in league play and a current 14-game winning streak, Dixon is the Golden Empire League champions. The Mavericks finished the regular season in second place three games behind the Rams in the standings.

The numbers don’t lie when it comes to the Rams’ dominance in league play. Dixon lost two sets to league opponents all season. The next closest team were the Mavericks who lost 12, however, six of them were to the Rams.

Mesa Verde begins the postseason on the road at Vanden (18-3, 10-0 Sierra Delta) of Fairfield on Tuesday in the 2022 CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division III Boys Volleyball Playoffs.