Placer coach Jennifer Wright is not a numbers person so much so that when she was asked about her team's 17-2 record, she laughed.
Not because it was overly comical, rather because she had no idea that her team was doing that well.
"That sounds pretty awesome," Wright said.
No. 7 Placer is in place to be a powerhouse in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III playoffs for a second straight year. The Hillgals, 5-0 in the Pioneer Valley League, are coming off a solid 3-1 win over No. 14 Bear River on Tuesday.
Placer, which also had nonleague wins against three Top 20 teams (No. 11 Rio Americano, No. 13 Roseville and No. 20 Whitney) last month, set up a possible league championship match on Oct. 25 in Grass Valley against Bear River.
"It was a really great match," Wright said of the Tuesday home win over Bear River. "A lot of the girls on both sides are great friends. It was a fun match."
Wright said the nonleague schedule she had in place "put us in a good spot going into league."
Led by senior setter Kirstin Schauble (6.3 assists) and junior outside hitter Becky Matthews, whom Wright calls "our go-to gal," the team has its sights set on the playoffs in light of Placer's loss to Vista del Lago in the semifinals of the section playoffs last season.
Tournament weekend Two local tournaments featured top teams from the Sacramento region and the Bay Area.
Vista del Lago hosted the NorCal Classic, which showcased five of The Bee's Top 20 teams, on Saturday.
Coach Patrick Sanders was pleased with the turnout and the level of competition in the tourney, and for the school itself, which is in just its fifth year of existence.
"Coaches had all positive things to say on the tournament," Sanders said. "To get Bay Area teams as well as those from our region to come out for some of the best competition was great."
Granite Bay reached the championship match, while Christian Brothers lost 25-17, 25-19 to Northgate of Walnut Creek in the semifinals. Granite Bay fell to Albany 25-16, 25-23 in the final.
Vista del Lago lost to Albany in the NorCal semifinals in 2011 after compiling a 36-10 record.
At Jackson's Sports Academy, the Carmichael Invitational featured three of The Bee's Top 20 teams.
No. 2 El Camino beat fellow Capital Athletic League opponent Rio Americano, ranked 11th, in the semifinals (2-0), while No. 5 Bella Vista lost to Salinas (2-1). El Camino captured its second tournament title this season with a 2-1 win over Salinas.
Injury update Vista del Lago (15-9) got a boost albeit a limited one with the return of senior Caroline Sipiora, who was seventh in the section last year with 4.0 kills per match.
Sipiora, a Utah verbal commit, tore an ACL while playing powder puff football.
Unable to return to her outside hitter position that she dominated for two seasons, Sipiora will play as a defensive specialist for the remainder of the season.