The early-season edition of the Davis High boys volleyball team probably had the talent to win Thursday’s Delta Valley Conference home match against Laguna Creek by a similar score. But the late-season version of the Blue Devils made the 25-15, 25-23, 25-17 victory at The Cage look good.
Despite being hampered by the Cardinals’ slower style of play, DHS (12-5, 6-2) showed how far it has come this season as the Devils were able to push the limits of what their offensive system allows them to do.
“We played really well (Thursday) … it’s hard to keep the pace and momentum because they do play so much slower than the other teams in our league,” explained Davis co-coach Jordon Friend. “We did a really good job running our system and we ran some more advanced plays (Thursday).
“It was good to see them running some double quicks and some tandems. It was cool to see my boys really come out and step up their games.”
The high-level offensive execution led to strong performances from the Blue Devils’ biggest hitters, as sophomore Nick Simons had 16 kills with a solid .275 hitting percentage, while senior Andre Foster added 12 kills with an excellent .391 percentage.
Simons credited his teammates for setting him up:
“It all comes down to the passing; if the passing is good then everything else will be good. You got Mike (Basso), he was phenomenal. Milton (Hong), Dominic (Fannijiang), really, everyone played well.”
Fannijiang and Basso had 15 digs each to lead DHS, while junior setter Evan Meerscheidt was credited with 30 assists.
Both Friend and Simons noted how much the Devils have improved since the season began. Davis is in second place in the DVC and has beaten every league foe except powerful Grant.
“It’s all how we cooperate, how we function,” explained Simons, who was a freshman standout on varsity last season. “A team is only as good as they are together as a group. We’ve come a long way from a bunch of guys that joined this year, that were brand-new to the sport. Now, they know how to set … they know how to play.”
DHS has two matches remaining — a road outing at Monterey Trail on Tuesday and Senior Night on Thursday against Elk Grove (5 p.m.) — after which it hopes to make some noise in the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs.
“I really like where we are,” Friend said. “We have two really tough matches so we aren’t going to look ahead … I think we are in a really good place to finish out league in second place. That’s our goal.”
— Reach Chris Saur at firstname.lastname@example.org or 530-747-8049.