Holtville High junior Kamryn Walker (3) goes up for a kill during the Vikings’ sweep over Southwest High in an Imperial Valley League match in Holtville on Thursday, Oct. 21. | CATHI PHILLIPS LARIOS PHOTO
HOLTVILLE — After finishing the Imperial Valley League season with a perfect 8-0 record, the Holtville High School volleyball team was awarded the top seed in the CIF-San Diego Section Division IV playoffs and will host 16th-seeded San Ysidro at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 26.
The Vikings (25-5 overall) wrapped up their undefeated IVL season with a sweep of Southwest High on Thursday, Oct. 21, winning 25-6, 25-15, 25-5, in Holtville.
Holtville won the 2019 CIF-SDS Division IV championship when the Vikings swept through the playoffs as the 12th-ranked team in the playoff tournament. Holtville defeated top-ranked Escondido Charter in the semifinals and then beat third-seeded High Tech Chula Vista in a five-set thriller in the championship match.
“Obviously our expectations are high, but we have to stay humble and take it one game at a time,” said Chelsey Strahm, Holtville’s fifth-year head coach. “All of these girls have been around, either volleyball or another sport, enough to develop that championship mindset.”
The Vikings enter the playoffs having won eight straight matches, dropping only three sets in those eight matches. The five losses Holtville suffered this season all came during tournament play in San Diego against teams in higher divisions.
Other Imperial Valley teams in the playoffs include Calexico, Central, Imperial and Brawley.
Sixth-seeded Calexico will host 11th-ranked San Pasqual of Escondido at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 27, in the Division III playoffs.
Imperial, the 12th seed, travels to El Cajon to take on fifth-ranked Granite Hills at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 27, in the Division III tournament.
In the Division II playoffs, Brawley got in as the 16th-seed and will travel to San Diego for a 7 p.m. matchup on Tuesday, Oct. 26, against top-seeded Francis Parker.
Central, champion of the Desert League, is seeded third in the Division V playoffs and have a bye in the first round. The Spartans will host the winner of The Cambridge School of San Diego and Palo Verde Valley of Blythe in the quarterfinals, set for 5 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 29, at Central.