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2009 All-area Team ?girls’ Volleyball:

Cool in the clutch

Spartans standout hitter rose to the occasion at every critical moment during season

January 02, 2010|By Seth Amitin

“We talked about this game for years,” Schroeder said. “We trash talked. McCutchan said ‘Your senior year is gonna suck, we’re gonna beat you’ and I kept saying, ‘No.’ Then they beat us.”

Schroeder noted that she saw personal growth in her friend this year.

“I think someone who’s a true team leader is someone who brings out the best in her teammates,” Schroeder said. “I saw Courtney do that.”

Through Rio Hondo League play, La Cañada cruised, going undefeated, 10-0, for the third year in a row and never ceding a game.

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In the Division II-A playoffs, the Spartans made easy work of La Habra, where McCutchan had 10 kills, and Oaks Christian.

Then the Spartans beat Troy at home in the semifinals. Troy had 25 wins on the season before La Cañada handed it only its third loss of the year.

“I talked to Courtney after that game,” Pierce said. “I told her how happy I was to be going to the finals. We wouldn’t have won that game without her.”

La Cañada lost to Elsinore in the finals, 25-19, 25-13, 21-25, 25-20. It went on to beat Frontier in the first round of the CIF Division II State Championships, but lost to Redlands East Valley in the round of eight. La Cañada finished 26-8 on the season.

“Winning CIF and getting MVP of CIF [last year] was definitely my favorite moment of my career,” said McCutchan, who will play at Lehigh University. “But this year was more fun in games. Troy and Flintridge Sacred Heart especially.”


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