Tustin boys volleyball team off to fast start and ready for league play this week

Tustin High’s boys volleyball team, off to one of the best starts in school history, begins Empire League play this week.

Tustin was moved up from Division 4 to Division 3 for the CIF playoffs this year, according to Coach Joanna Lane, now in her seventh season.

Tustin, which finished tied for second in the Empire League last season, opens league play Thursday, March 23, at Western at 4:30 p.m. The Tillers next home match will be Tuesday, March 28, when they host Valencia at 4:30 p.m. A canned food drive for the Orange County Rescue Mission will also be held that night.

“This is a very exciting start to our preseason,” Lane said. “Fueled by good vibes, hard work, and a relentless effort, the Tillers are gearing up and ready for league. We are 10-1 overall.”

Tustin, ranked No. 2 in this week’s CIF Division 3 poll, began the season hosting the Fighting Farmer Classic and went 2-1 in pool play, losing to Northwood.

“We went on to the Silver bracket and beat Calvary Chapel Santa Ana and Taft to win the Silver championship for an impressive 4-1 record on the day,” Lane said.

The Tillers also defeated El Modena for the first time in four years in three sets. Outside hitter Carlos Perez led the way with 23 kills and 10 digs.

Libero Johnny Flores had 22 digs and middle blocker Drew Donahoo had 12 kills and four blocks.

Tustin also defeated Marina for the first time in four years. Perez had 18 kills and 14 digs, outside hitter Derek Zamudio had 10 kills, six digs and four aces and Donahoo had eight kills and three blocks. Flores had 18 digs and one ace.

The Tillers also defeated Magnolia. Perez had 14 kills and two blocks; opposite hitter Kalob Partida had four kills and three blocks, opposite hitter Jared Davis had three kills and two blocks, Donahoo had 11 kills and five blocks, outside hitter Chris Landis had two kills and a .667 attack percentage. Libero Brandon Rossano had four digs.

“We had an incredible nail biting 3-2 match win…

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