SALIDA -- Maycie LaBass stands a sturdy 6-feet tall and, when she smiles, she reveals a mouthful of braces.
But when she swings her right arm and tries to dent the hardwood, it's the opponents' turn to brace.
"It's an amazing feeling," LaBass says as she describes her point-getting skill. "Words can't describe the feeling. So much adrenaline."
LaBass and her Gregori High teammates are riding a major adrenaline rush. The Jaguars opened the Sac-Joaquin Section Division 2 volleyball tournament on Thursday night with a convincing 3-0 shutout over Vacaville.
Gregori (32-2) quickly sent home the Bulldogs 25-12, 25-18 and 25-12 via overpowering performances by LaBass (13 kills), 6-1 Courtney Robinson (8 kills, 3 blocks) and 5-10 Michala Wyrsch (9 kills).
A crowd of about 250, including a boisterous student section sitting near the top of the bleachers, basked in Gregori's dominance. The No. 2-seeded Jaguars, who won their section opener for the second straight year, will entertain No. 6 Rocklin, a 3-1 victor over Benicia, in a muscle-versus-muscle semifinal Tuesday night.
Much has been made of Gregori's first year with seniors. It's largely a moot point, however, with the volleyball team. Only one senior, Kristine Paulson, graces a roster that already has claimed two Modesto Metro Conference titles.
The rest are sophomores and juniors, which is bad news for the MMC and everyone else. Their only losses this season happened at neutral-court tournaments.
No. 7 seed Vacaville (18-15), the third-place finisher in the Monticello Empire League, did not match up with the home team. Gregori identified the Bulldogs' weaknesses, then attacked from all angles.
"The girls stepped it up tonight. They were so focused," coach Ron Silva said. "We had better blocking, more movement and tenacious defense."
Gregori complemented its net strength with back-row production from Kathleen Rosales (10 digs) and Justine Limon (6 digs).
During the first set, Wyrsch brushed the ball basket at the end of the Gregori bench to extend a point eventually won by the Jaguars.
Vacaville coach Allison Adcock called six timeouts to stall Gregori's momentum. None worked.
When 6-1 Emilee VanDyke served nine straight points to open the third set, the matter was settled.
Silva's team was knocked out by Oakdale in the second round in 2011. One year later, Silva believes the Jaguars are improving game to game and even practice to practice.
"They haven't even reached their peak yet," he said.
LaBass is OK right now.