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Gomes guides Vaqueros to 3-1 win in opener

Haward Gomes posted a career-high 16 kills and 6 digs in Saturday's season-opening victory. (Photo by Ken Sciallo / Sevilla Photography)
Haward Gomes posted a career-high 16 kills and 6 digs in Saturday's season-opening victory. (Photo by Ken Sciallo / Sevilla Photography)

Haward Gomes ripped a career-high 16 kills and hit .440 on Saturday afternoon, sparking SBCC to a 3-1 win over Golden West in its men's volleyball season opener at Huntington Beach.

Gomes, a standout on the 2016 Vaquero squad, is a 6-2 sophomore outside hitter from Shingle Springs, Calif. (40 miles from Sacramento). He came off the bench to pace the 25-23, 22-25, 25-19, 25-14 victory. SBCC hit .385 in the fourth set and .192 for the match.

Blake Lockhart, a 6-6 freshman from Santa Ynez High, added 11 kills while Kyle Skinner had eight kills, eight digs and three aces. Setter Adam Simonetti notched 45 assists and libero Misaki Cramer dug 23 balls.

"It was a great win by the guys to open the season, especially on the road against a good program," said second-year coach Jon Newton. "We started out nervous, which is expected being the first game of the season, and it showed in the first two sets. We started to figure it out in the third set and by the fourth set, we were firing on all cylinders."

The Vaqueros will play two games in the San Diego area this weekend. They'll take on San Diego Miramar on Friday at 3:30 p.m. and then play the University of St. Katherine on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. The Firebirds are a four-year program that competes in the National Christian College Athletic Association.