Men’s volleyball team ‘stinks’ in road loss at Santa Monica College

After taking command of the visiting Warriors in the first set, the comeback in the second set gave some momentum. However, the Corsairs came out flat and found themselves down 15-7.

Santa Monica College would come all the way back from an eight-point deficit to win the third set 25-21.

The El Camino men’s volleyball team (6-7 overall, 3-3 in the South Coast Conference) were outdone for most of the match, and when it finally found momentum, it let go of the gas pedal in the three-set loss to SMC (25-19, 27-25, 25-21) on Friday night.

“We stunk,” EC coach Dick Blount said. “We have veteran leaders and they’re not making veteran plays.”

Blount added that the fact that the team is back to .500 in the conference “stinks.”

In the third set, the team really had a chance to bounce back from being down 0-2, but the mental breakdown was too tough for the team and it blew the lead.

“(It’s) frustrating,” freshman libero Eric Veliz said. “Don’t quite understand how (we lost) with the level of talent we have. (We need to) stop dwelling on one point and we need to stop waiting for the other team to show us what we have.”

Sophomore middle blocker Peter Nordel said he has focused on the team bonding aspect and the mental side of the game.

“(We need) high intensity (to keep up the strong play),” he said.

Unfortunately, the team has not reciprocated the high intensity, and even though it has won the first set in seven of its 13 games this season, the lead has been blown several times.

“We didn’t buckle down when we needed to,” Veliz said. “Which has happened in the past, we just (have to) learn to press the gas pedal when we have the opportunity and we had the opportunity (tonight) and we blew it.”

The Warriors are back at home against Moorpark on Friday at 6 p.m. in the South Gym.