Delta volleyball sends two pairs to NorCals

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Kelly Markham and Amilya Thompson celebrate after scoring a point. The pair would eventually qualify for the state finals.
Kelly Markham and Amilya Thompson celebrate after scoring a point. The pair would eventually qualify for the state finals.

While the second season of Delta beach volleyball has come to an end for the team the Mustangs will still have two pairs continuing to play as the pairs of Kelly Markham with Amilya Thompson and Ella Ditzenberger with Stephanie Fopiano both qualified for the NorCal Championship tournament on May 3 at Sierra College in Rocklin.

Delta’s No. 1 team of Cal State East Bay-bound Markham and Fresno State-bound Thompson entered the 2019 Big 8 pairs tournament as the No. 4 seed and that’s how they ended up as they won the first two matches they played before dropping a semifinal matchup against the eventual champions. Dropping a narrow one-set match to determine third place they will be the NorCal No. 4 seed on Friday morning.

Delta’s No. 3 team had a much more interesting path to qualifying for the NorCal tournament as they were the No. 9 seed and were forced to play Delta’s No. 2 team of Ashley Apel and Alanna Valdez in the opening round which saw them pull out the win in three sets. Following the win they dropped a match which forced them into a must win situation to qualify which they did in straight sets to earn the right to have their season continue for at least another week.

As a team the Mustangs saw a two-win improvement in the second year of the programs fielding a beach team as they went 6-7 on the year after going 4-9 in the first year of the program.