The quest toward completing a Sonoma County League title trifecta began for the defending champion Sonoma Valley High School varsity volleyball girls last Thursday and they got off to a roaring start by sweeping longtime rival El Molino 25-7, 25-9, 25-9 before a large Pfeiffer Gym crowd.

Leading the Lady Dragons to victory were 2012 SCL player of the year junior Mackenzie Albrecht's 18 assists, four digs and two solo blocks; senior all-leaguer Gianna Monterosso's 11 assists; junior all-leaguer Delaney Swanson's 10 kills, four serving aces and three digs; freshman Kiara Miles' nine kills and two aces; senior Kayten Mak's eight digs and two aces; junior all-leaguer Ciara Smith's six kills and three solo blocks; junior Cheyenne McCambridge's six digs; sophomore Sami Von Gober's four kills and one ace; junior all-leaguer Anastasia Claros' four digs; senior Kaitlyn Boldt's three digs; sophomore Carlie Vollert's three kills; senior Janeth Silva's two aces; and junior Hannah Herrick's and frosh Jenna Mak's solo blocks.

The Sonoma spikers face former multiple champion and perennial SCL title contender Analy in Sebastopol tonight, before returning home to host league foe Healdsburg this Thursday, Sept. 26, in Pfeiffer Gym, with the junior varsity starting at 5 and the varsity playing at 6:30 p.m.

On Saturday, Sonoma’s volleyball program – directed by head coach Mindy Neves and assistant coaches Michele Foster and Heidi Boatright – held its annual varsity Greg Paganini Invitational Tournament, which benefited the Greg Paganini Scholarship Fund.

Joining the Lady Dragons in the highly competitive 16-team tourney field were Analy, Cardinal Newman, Casa Grande, Liberty, Maria Carrillo, Marin Academy, Montgomery, Novato, Petaluma, Rancho Cotate, Redwood, San Marin, Terra Linda, Vintage and Windsor.

After four straight tourney wins, the Sonoma's girls faced Vintage in a semifinal showdown and rematch from an early nonleague meeting and dropped a 12-25, 22-25 decision.

In their trip to the semifinal round, the Lady Dragons (12-4 overall record) defeated San Marin 25-8, 25-13; edged Rancho Cotate 25-22, 25-20; beat Cardinal Newman 25-16, 25-18; then toppled Marin Academy 25-19, 25-16, 25-19, 25-16 in the championship bracket quarterfinal.

Sonoma's inaugural 16-team Paganini junior varsity tournament is scheduled for this Saturday, Sept. 28.