By Joe Naiman
Ramona High School’s boys volleyball program hosted the Bulldog Invitational junior varsity tournament at the Epic Volleyball Center in Poway.
The Bulldogs had a 2-2 record in the tournament, losing to both finalists.
“I thought we played pretty good,” said JV Coach Kyle Adelman.
Ramona hosts the tournament to raise revenue for all levels of the boys volleyball program.
Janice Corbett, whose son graduated from Ramona High School in 2009, continues to operate the snack bar.
“She puts on a heck of a snack bar for us. That’s our big fundraiser,” said Varsity Coach Jeff Klauda.
The 16-team tournament saw Otay Ranch defeat La Costa Canyon in the finals, but not before both teams handed Ramona its only losses during the invitational.
“This tournament was pretty tough,” said Adelman.
Ramona played the tournament without middle blocker Lance Stickney, who was promoted to the varsity April 25 to replace Kenny Lawler after Lawler was diagnosed with a soft tissue tear, so Adelman had to reposition his remaining JV players.
“I thought it actually made them better. They rallied and they came together as a team to put together a really strong effort,” Adelman said.
The Bulldogs opened pool play with a 25-12, 25-13 victory over San Marcos, who had defeated Ramona earlier in the season during a non-league match.
“The boys were pretty excited about it,” Adelman said of the rematch with the Knights. “We came out on fire.”
After a 25-13 loss in Ramona’s first game against La Costa Canyon, the Bulldogs had a 19-16 lead in the second game before falling victim to the Mavericks’ jump server. The 25-19 score was the Mavericks’ closest victory in pool play.
“I thought they put together an extremely respectable performance,” Adelman said of his players. “We had to make them actually play their game to beat us.”
Ramona closed pool play with a 25-20, 25-13 triumph over Francis Parker.
“We ended up kind of getting it together,” Adelman said.
La Costa Canyon won the pool while Ramona’s second-place finish gave the Bulldogs a one-game match against Otay Ranch in the first elimination round.
“We got a tough draw,” Adelman said. “I thought we held together.”