Beach Volleyball: Rio Hondo edges Santa Monica for opening-weekend win

The Rio Hondo College women's beach volleyball team opened the 2017 season by winning one of three matches over two days in Huntington Beach, highlighted by a narrow 3-2 victory over Santa Monica College on Friday. In its opener on Thursday, the Roadrunners fell to Golden West College 4-1 and suffered a 5-0 defeat to Cypress College on Saturday afternoon.

The team of returning state championship qualifiers Carleigh Cruz and Paula Alferez led the Roadrunners by picking up a pair of wins.

Rio Hondo will return to Huntington Beach next Friday (Mar. 3) to take on another pair of Orange County opponents in Santa Ana College and Orange Coast College. Action is set to begin at 10 a.m.

Golden West 4, Rio Hondo 1
At No. 2, Cruz and Alferez picked up Rio Hondo's lone victory, beating Golden West's Jasmine Gonzalez and Amanda Sosa by scores of 21-19, 21-14.The duo Sara Harding and Bree Newton came up just short in their match at No. 4 as they lost 12-21, 21-11, 15-7 to GWC's Samantha Ureno and Melissa Martinez.

No. 1 - Kate Stenjevich/Ashleigh Atsaros (GWC) def. Tanya Metchkoff/Hayley Brownwood (RHC) 21-17, 21-16
No. 2 - Carleigh Cruz/Paula Alferez (RHC) def. Jasmine Gonzalez/Amanda Sosa (GWC) 21-19, 21-14
No. 3 - Cherene Uale/Akimi Fujikara (GWC) def.  Jacqueline Chaidez/Rachel Bustillos (RHC) 21-19, 21-16
No. 4 - Samantha Ureno/Melissa Martinez (GWC) def. Sara Harding/Bree Newton (RHC) 12-21, 21-11, 15-7
No. 5 - Baileigh Graham/Erica Cantley (GWC) def. Victoria Martinez/Natalie Magallon (RHC) 21-9, 22-20

Rio Hondo 3, Santa Monica 2
Cruz and Alferez continued their winning ways with a 21-12, 21-8 win at No. 2 while the Rio Hondo duos of Newton and Harding at No. 4 and Martinez and Magallon at No. 5 led the Roadrunners to the team victory.

No. 1 - Tessa Tooman/Megan Yoon (SMC) def. Tanya Metchkoff/Hayley Brownwood (RHC) 21-13, 21-11
No. 2 - Carleigh Cruz/Paula Alferez (RHC) def. Hannah Douglas/Taylor Burke (SMC) 21-12, 21-8
No. 3 - Ada Nadzakona/Gizzelle Navarro (SMC) def. Jacqueline Chaidez/Rachel Bustillos (RHC) 21-14, 6-21, 17-15
No. 4 - Sara Harding/Bree Newton (RHC) def. Jene Price/Lauren Rosenquist (SMC) 21-12, 21-10
No. 5 - Victoria Martinez/Natalie Magallon (RHC) def. Morgan Tarpley/Ana Radko (SMC) 21-18, 22-24, 15-10

Cypress 5, Rio Hondo 0
Cruz and Alferez played up at No. 1 and suffered their first loss, falling 21-13, 21-17 to Rochelle Cohlson and Sam Martinez of Cypress. Rio Hondo also had good chances at wins at No. 4 and No. 5 but Newton/Harding and Martinez/Magallon both suffered three-set losses.

No. 1 - Rochelle Cohlson/Sam Martinez (CYP) def. Carleigh Cruz/Paula Alferez (RHC) 21-13, 21-17
No. 2 - Paulina Akiona/Sam Madrid (CYP) def. Tanya Metchkoff/Hayley Brownwood (RHC) 21-16, 21-18
No. 3 - Emily Witz/Brianna Johnson (CYP) def. Jacqueline Chaidez/Rachel Bustillos (RHC) 21-16, 21-5
No. 4 - Paige Buchannan/Ateya Allen (CYP) def. Sara Harding/Bree Newton (RHC) 18-21, 21-14, 15-9
No. 5 - Sina Amasio/Pam Faalata (CYP) def. Victoria Martinez/Natalie Magallon (RHC) 15-21, 21-16, 15-9