Girls Volleyball: Sandburg finds it’s best to rest

Updated: October 15, 2012 8:37PM

There’s nothing like a good night’s sleep.

Sandburg coach David Vales didn’t discount that as a contributing factor to his Eagles beating Libertyville 25-23, 25-22 Saturday to capture the Maine West Pumpkin Tournament for the first time since 2002.

“Every year we would spend the night (at a hotel) there,” Vales said. “It seemed like we were always dead by the time the last match came around. This year I said, ‘OK, no sleepover. Let’s go home, sleep in our own beds and get there and see how we play.”

The Eagles avenged championship-match losses the past two years to Lyons by beating the Lions in pool play 25-13, 25-14. They also scored victories over Maine West, Lake Zurich and Evanston.

“It felt good,” Vales said. “We had kind of set our goal on the championship from the beginning. Every year we say it, but this year it was a different feel with Paige (Bendell) and Dakota (Hampton) in their third year.

“They knew how to approach it and now to lead by example. That’s what kind of got us going.”

In the three Saturday matches, Bendell produced 35 kills and 45 assists while Hampton had 40 kills as Sandburg improved to 25-8.

Stepping up

What if a varsity tournament had no varsity teams in the title match?

That’s what happened Saturday at the Shepard Gemini Tournament, where the JV teams from Mother McAuley and Marist played for the Gold Division crown.

McAuley emerged a 25-18, 21-25, 25-22 victor, completing a sweep of the five matches that also included wins over varsity teams from Argo, Rich South, Plainfield North and Shepard. Marist’s JV won its way into the championship round by beating varsity teams from Fenwick, Richards and Plainfield North, and Shepard’s JV.

Traveling time

For the second year in a row, Marist has been invited to and will play at the Nike National Tourney of Champions from Friday to Sunday in Phoenix. In 2011, the RedHawks finished second out of more than 60 teams.

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