In leading up to the official start of the 2018-19 athletics campaign at Irvine Valley, which starts on Aug. 25 with the IVC men's soccer team at Yavapai in Arizona, the Laser athletic department is counting down the top 10 IVC sports stories from the 2017-18 school year.
The No. 4 story of the year features the run to the state tournament by the Irvine Valley men's volleyball team. The squad reached the final four at the California Community College Athletic Association State Championships at Fullerton and ended up being ranked fourth in the state in the final coaches association state poll. IVC was paced by Matt August, Patrick Furlong, Austin McBain, Brennan To, Sean Carroll, Trent Williams and Kelsey Yogi.
Irvine Valley's men's volleyball team ended the year ranked No. 4 in the final California Community College Men's Volleyball Coaches Association State Poll after reaching the California Community College Athletic Association State Championships.
The Lasers ended the year with a record of 16-6 overall, finished second in the Orange Empire Conference and reached the semifinals of the state event.
IVC reached the state tournament for the first time since 2014 after sweeping aside El Camino in a quarterfinal match on Friday night at home in April.
The third-seeded Lasers defeated No. 6 El Camino, 25-19, 25-23, 25-19, in one of their best matches of the season.
The win was also IVC's first home playoff victory since 2008.
IVC got a well-balanced effort on the night. Sophomore outside hitter Patrick Furlong had nine kills, freshman outside hitter season Carroll added eight kills and seven blocks, sophomore middle blocker Matt August had seven kills and 12 blocks and sophomore outside hitter Brennan To and freshman outside hitter Trent Williams each contributed six kills.
Irvine Valley ended up falling in the state semifinals to second-seeded Orange Coast, 25-19, 21-25, 25-16, 25-20, at Fullerton College.
OCC will take on No. 4 Pierce in the championship match on Saturday night. Pierce was an upset winner over top-ranked Long Beach City in the other semifinal on Thursday.
Furlong led the team with 13 kills and 10 digs. August had 12 kills and six blocks and McBain finished with 29 assists.
Five Irvine Valley players earned all-Orange Empire Conference honors at the end of the year.
The Lasers were led by first team players August and Furlong and conference setter of the year McBain.
August averaged 3.08 kills per set, 1.90 blocks per set and hit .488 during the regular season. He ended up hitting .454 on the year. August led the state in blocks per set and ranked second in hitting percentage.
Furlong averaged 3.04 kills and 1.04 blocks per set and ranked third in the state in total kills (246).
McBain was third in the state, averaging 10.11 assists per set.
To and Yogi were each picked to the second team for the Lasers.
To averaged 1.82 kills per set. Yogi led state in total digs with 239 and averaged 2.95 digs per set, which was fifth.