The 2019 schedule for the two-time defending Orange Empire Conference champion Irvine Valley women's volleyball team has been released.
The Lasers are 48-2 over the last two seasons, have won back-to-back conference championships and made two straight CCCAA State Championship tournament appearances. The 2017 squad went 27-0 and captured the second state title in program history.
The 2019 Lasers will start the season with two straight scrimmages, hosting Pasadena City on Wednesday, Aug. 21 at 1 p.m. IVC will then play a scrimmage match at Cerritos on Friday, Aug. 23.
Irvine Valley officially gets its regular season underway with a match at San Diego Miramar at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 28 before playing its first real home mach of the year on Friday, Aug. 30 against College of the Canyons at 5 p.m.
It will be the first of seven straight home matches for the Lasers. IVC will take on Chaffey on Sept. 4, Palomar and Cal Lutheran's JV squad on Sept. 6, Long Beach City on Sept. 11, MiraCosta on Sept. 13 and Fullerton on Sept. 20.
The match with Fullerton on Friday, Sept. 20 at 6 p.m. will open conference play for Irvine Valley.
The Lasers will play 16 conference matches in all, including taking on Orange Coast at home on Oct. 9, Cypress at home on Oct. 16, Saddleback at home on Oct. 18 and Golden West at home on Nov. 13.
Irvine Valley lost several key players to graduation, including conference co-MVP and All-American libero Renata Bath and all-conference outside hitter Alyssa Vortouni. Bath signed to play at UC Riverside and Vortouni will be a preferred walk-on for beach volleyball at Grand Canyon University.
But coach Tom Pestolesi is expected to have a strong group of incoming players to go along with returners Lea Kruse, Truth Hafey, Alaina Gendale, Kristin Austin, Gabriela Griego and Anna Unke.
Kruse was co-MVP of the conference with Bath last season and Hafey was an all-conference setter. All six players mentioned above also had a strong run with the IVC beach volleyball team this past spring that won a conference title and made the state championship tournament.