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El Camino women’s volleyball team holds off late surge from Bakersfield College to win in the first round of playoffs

El+Camino%27s+sophomore+middle+blocker+Micah+Hammond+attacks+the+ball+against+the+Bakersfield+College+Renegades+on+Tuesday%2C+Nov.+22.%0AThe+Warriors+beat+the+Renegades+3-1+to+advance+to+the+second+round+of+playoffs.+Photo+credit%3A+Jo+Rankin
El Camino's sophomore middle blocker Micah Hammond attacks the ball against the Bakersfield College Renegades on Tuesday, Nov. 22.
The Warriors beat the Renegades 3-1 to advance to the second round of playoffs. Photo credit: Jo Rankin

El Camino's sophomore middle blocker Micah Hammond attacks the ball against the Bakersfield College Renegades on Tuesday, Nov. 22. The Warriors beat the Renegades 3-1 to advance to the second round of playoffs. Photo credit: Jo Rankin

El Camino's sophomore middle blocker Micah Hammond attacks the ball against the Bakersfield College Renegades on Tuesday, Nov. 22. The Warriors beat the Renegades 3-1 to advance to the second round of playoffs. Photo credit: Jo Rankin

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Playoff magic, that’s a thing right?

It has to be for the El Camino women’s volleyball team.

But it’s more of a person, not magic, and that person happens to be the team’s coach Le Valley Pattison.

In the first round of playoffs, Pattison and the Warriors were off to a quick 2-0 start over the visiting Bakersfield College Renegades.

Then the third set happened.

“I knew Bakersfield (wasn’t) going to roll over and die,” Pattison said. “(Maybe) it was a long road trip (and they) were nervous, but they came out a little stronger in the third.”

The No. 6 El Camino women’s volleyball team took down the No. 11 Bakersfield Renegades, 3-1 in sets (25-15, 26-24, 20-25, 25-22) on Tuesday night to advance to the second round of the SoCal Regional playoffs.

After losing the third set, the Warriors came out and almost blew a lead.

Pattison called timeout while her team trailed 20-17, and then the magic happened.

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The No. 6 Southern California ranked El Camino women's volleyball team celebrate a point during the first round of playoffs vs. Bakersfield College. Photo credit: Jo Rankin

Freshman outside hitter Aiko Waters and the team came together to pull out an 8-2 run to win the fourth set and the game.

“I noticed a lot was on the line for me,” she said. “I had the game in my hands (leading 24-22), so I tried to execute (and I did).”

Waters had three aces down the stretch to not only help tie the game late, but end it on the final point as well.

“We needed to get Micah in the game early (and we did),” Pattison said. “She really was the difference maker tonight.”

One key to the match was being able to stop the balanced 6-2 offense of Bakersfield, as well as out-produce the artillery of the No. 8 ranked offense.

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El Camino's sophomore opposite hitter Taylor Brydon splits the block to get a point against the Bakersfield College Renegades on Tuesday, Nov. 22.
The Warriors beat the Renegades 3-1 to advance to the second round of playoffs. Photo credit: Jo Rankin

The Warriors did just that.

Sophomore opposite hitter Taylor Brydon, middle blocker Micah Hammond, freshman outside hitter Jaylin Motley and Waters all had double-digit kills in the win with 17, 16, 11 and 10 respectively.

The No. 14 Irvine Valley College Lasers came away with an upset victory over the No. 3 Santa Barbara City College Vaqueros on Tuesday.

El Camino will host IVC on Saturday at 6 p.m.

“It’s definitely our goal to win,” Brydon said. “It’s awesome that we get to host (another game, but) we have a lot of work to do before Saturday. We need to work on things like passing, and if we can do that, we’ll be great.”

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El Camino women’s volleyball team holds off late surge from Bakersfield College to win in the first round of playoffs