By Deandra Du
Editor in Chief
Both girls volleyball and cross country represented Gabrielino in matches for the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) playoffs this month.
On Nov. 3, GHS girls volleyball played Sunny Hills High School (SHHS) in Division 6 of the second round of CIF. After struggling in the first set, the Lady Eagles fiercely fought back, but ultimately fell to SHHS in the last few sets, losing, 1-3.
Even though the match ended their season, the players were glad that they were able to go out with a bang.
“We fought hard during CIF and played with our all until the very last point,” stated junior Audrey Kuptz. “I’m going to play with the same fire, drive, and heart throughout all my games next year.”
On Nov. 1, GHS beat Temescal Canyon High School (TCHS) in the first CIF round, 3-0. From the start, the Lady Eagles created a strong lead against their adversaries.
Gabrielino came into the playoffs with determination, resulting in a riveting 25-10 victory in the first set of the match. After a close call in the second set, GHS turned on the heat, decisively closing the match, 25-17.
For the Eagles, beating the Tigers was a monumental win, not just in terms of the score, but teamwork.
“We always struggled to play as a team throughout the season,” stated senior Bianca Moy, “but there was a sense of unity in the first round. I really felt like we all trusted each other on the court.”
On Nov. 12, GHS girls cross country competed in CIF Division 3, receiving 17th place in their division. Despite the “dusty” and “rugged” course, the team had a memorable experience at the meet and finished with 526 points. For most of the girls, it was their first time running in the CIF playoffs.
Senior Vivian Lee says that she is proud of the team for doing their best.
“My coach gave her last pep speech before I raced and it made me realize how fast this season went by,” said the 4-year-senior. “I will never forget the exhilarating feeling of racing.”
The same day, boys cross country raced to 19th place in Division 3, with an overall time of 1:26:31. Junior Jayson Espinosa and sophomore Skylar Hudson ran personal best times, receiving 26th and 78th place, respectively.
“We didn’t do as well as expected, but, after four seasons, it felt good knowing I did everything I could to improve myself,” stated Charlie Tran, the only male senior on the team this year.
Cross country ended the day by celebrating a successful season at the Old Spaghetti Factory, a post-CIF tradition. For Tran, the dinner was the best way to wrap up his four years running for Gabrielino.