Mira Costa girls volleyball team learning the lingo of a new head coach
by Randy Angel
The players on Mira Costa’s girls volleyball team began their learning process more than a month before school started when new head coach and alum Cam Green took over the program.
Green was a member of the Mustang’s CIF championship team in 1990 and in 1992 was the Ocean League MVP, first team All-CIF and a member of Volleyball Magazine’s Fab 50.
Among his 25 years of coaching experience, Green spent seven years on the pro AVP and FIVB circuit mentoring Nancy (Mason) Reynolds, Carrie (Busch) Dodd, silver medalist Jen Kessy, Rachel Wacholder and Tyra Turner along with the Canadian team of Liz Maloney and current Olympian Heather Bansley, and most recently Madison and Riley McKibbin.
He also spent seven seasons as an assistant coach with USC and two with Long Beach State, coaching in two NCAA national championship games and five final fours.
Yet Green is excited to mentor the up-and-coming players on Mira Costa’s squad.
“I’m speaking a new language to the players but they are learning fast,” Green said. “I feel they can compete with everyone. There’s tons of talent on our team, we just need to focus on improving and learning and the wins will come. We’ve had great practices so we’re on the right track.”
After mentoring pro and college players, many would think Green is taking a step backwards. He stopped coaching boys in 2005.
“I’ve had a little voice saying ‘You gotta coach the girls.’” Green said. “Things opened up and I figured I could help the program. Mira Costa is where I played and coached. I’ve had memories in the back of my mind the whole time. I love that place.”
Mira Costa began the season going 3-2 in the Ann Kang Tournament in Hawaii defeating Boswell, Glen Rose and Village Christian before falling to Harvard Westlake in the second match. The Mustangs lost to eventual champion Iolani 2-0 in the semifinals.
The Mustangs came home but were shutout by Marymount 25-19, 25-22, 25-13 before beginning play in the Dave Mohs Tournament last weekend.
Ranked No. 5 in the CIF-SS Division 1 poll, Mira Costa won its pool with victories against James Logan and Edison, but fell to Vista Murrieta (No. 14) 25-22, 25-20 in the semifinals. Mater Dei (No. 1) won the tournament, sweeping Vista Murrieta 25-18, 25-18.
Green realizes it’s a learning process for his girls who hosted Village Christian (No. 1, Div 3) Tuesday and will travel to take on perennial power La Costa Canyon on Thursday.
Bay League action begins Tuesday, Sept. 11 when Mira Costa hosts a strong Palos Verdes squad. The Mustangs will also compete in the NIKE Tournament of Champions in Phoenix, Ariz. Sept 20-22.
“We have a very diverse team. I just want us to keep improving, which we are quickly doing this season,” Green said. “We have plenty of tough matches ahead of us that I am really looking forward to.”
This year’s Mira Costa squad is led by three standout players including last year’s team MVP Rochelle Scott whom Green considers a valuable, all-around player.
Malea Stanton controls the important position of setter. “She’s the calm leader and is a steady influence for the other girls,” Green said.
The Mustangs also return outside hitter Memphis Glasgow who is one of the hardest hitters in Southern California.
Green hopes the tough battles his team has faced will prepare them for the Bay League.
“There’s enough talent around to make it a tough league,” Green said. “Redondo has to be the favorite but we will challenge them as will Palos Verdes and Peninsula. Winning the league title will not be a walk in the park.”
Redondo on a roll
Coach Tommy Chaffins’ Redondo (No. 2, Div. 1) squad remained undefeated with a 26-24, 25-13, 25-21 sweep of visiting Marymount (No. 4, Div. 1).
The Sea Hawks swept Bishop Montgomery (No. 2, Div. 4) Tuesday before traveling to face Mater Dei (No. 1, Div. 1) Wednesday in a match pitting the top teams in CIF-Southern Section Division 1.
Mater Dei is 12-0 while Redondo maintains a 9-0 record.
On Saturday, Redondo will take on St. Teresa’s Academy of Kansas City, MO before launching their Bay League campaign on Thursday, Sept. 13 at Leuzinger.