Mountain Pointe captures Brophy Invitational - East Valley Tribune: VarsityXtra

Mountain Pointe captures Brophy Invitational

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Posted: Sunday, April 6, 2008 12:13 am

If this were a preview of the state boys volleyball tournament, the postseason certainly will have an Ahwatukee flair.

SLIDESHOW: View photos from the tournament

If this were a preview of the state boys volleyball tournament, the postseason certainly will have an Ahwatukee flair.

SLIDESHOW: View photos from the tournament

Phoenix Mountain Pointe continued its dominance over rival Phoenix Desert Vista with a pair of wins on Saturday, the second in the championship match of the loaded Brophy Prep Invitational in Phoenix.

“It’s really important to us just to come out here and make a statement,” said Mountain Pointe’s Bryan Lee. “Yeah, there are undefeated teams out there, but you come to this tournament, you come to win.”

The Pride, which are officially 9-1 but 25-1 counting tournament play, bounced back from a close game to efficiently put away the Thunder, running out to a 15-2 lead in the second game and never looking back. Mountain Pointe rallied for a 29-31, 25-9, 15-8 win Saturday afternoon.

“It feels great, all these teams here were the top teams in the state,” said outside hitter Derek Schwertley (13 kills). “Basically a preview for the state tournament.”

Desert Vista, 0-3 against Mountain Pointe this season and set to face it again on Thursday, surprised the Pride by staving off a game point in the first set at 24-23 with a pair of kills by Greg Baginski and Michael Proctor. Then, the Thunder ran off three straight points down 29-28 on hits by Proctor and Cory Fisher and then a kill attempt by Pride outside hitter Schwertley that Proctor returned and fell in.

But Schwertley and Brandon Barna took over in the second game. Both had four kills in the opening run and Schwertley put the match away at the end of the third game.

Desert Vista (13-5) was already running on fumes, having lost to Mountain Pointe in the winner’s bracket final of the double-elimination tournament. The Pride then outlasted surprising Brophy (2-8) to reach the championship match.

“It just makes us feel that the work we’ve put in so far has paid off,” Mountain Pointe coach Fred Mann said. “And we’re not going to stop working and try to improve even more.”

That meant the Thunder had to play five matches, three in a row, on the day while Mountain Pointe got an hour off before their fourth match, the final.

“We caught them by surprise a little bit,” Desert Vista coach Ryan Tolman said about the first-set win. “We started okay. It’s the starts that kill us against those guys. For some reason when we start poorly, things kind of fall apart for us. You noticed that in the second and third games.”

Brophy surprised many with their run after coming in as the lowest ranked team in the field. Six of the eight teams are in the top 10 of the power rankings.

But the Broncos beat Gilbert Highland, Tempe Corona del Sol and Gilbert to reach the loser’s bracket final, falling to Desert Vista 25-19, 24-26, 15-11.

Tucson Salpointe Catholic, the No. 1 team in the power rankings at 11-0, ended the first day in last place and was eliminated after just two matches on Saturday.

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[Stats Courtesy of MaxPreps]