Mixed Volleyball League Division 1 – Match Report
Monday night saw a top of the table clash in the volleyball mixed division 1 league. In what was arguably the most anticipated game of the volleyball season, front-runners White Rock faced second position team, Leapfrog in their 8 o’clock competition. Having lost to White Rock in their last match, Leapfrog were determined to even the score and beat the notorious team in black.
White Rock began strong with the first serve, setting the tone for the rest of the match. It only took Leapfrog a couple of points to win their first and turn the possession over. The bar was set high from the outset with both teams adamant that the win will be theirs. Despite fierce hits from White Rock players, Ross Gledhill and Ryan Martel, Leapfrog fought hard to keep the ball in play and displayed excellent teamwork in doing so. With this, Leapfrog narrowly won the first set which gave the team a huge confidence boost going into the second.
After winning the first set, Leapfrog knew White Rock would come back on court stronger in order to even the score. Accurate serving by White Rock’s Lev Kayacan pushed his team ahead as Leapfrog found themselves stuck in their rotation. After breaking the serve, Leapfrog took full advantage of their player of the match, Edgars Zalcamanis, as he was on top form, hitting through the middle. Towards the end of the set Leapfrog found themselves down by 2 points at 20–22. Despite building momentum by winning 3 valuable points in a row, White Rock proved they can fight back and took the set 25–23.
With an even playing field heading into the third set, it was all to play for. “You could feel the pressure right from beginning as both teams exchanged points with serving mistakes” said Leapfrog’s Edgars Zalcamanis, “but we knew what we had to do and make sure that we support each other. You always get satisfaction just by having great people around you that will always support each other. That is what ‘Leapfrog’ is all about.”
The final set concluded when a mammoth spike by Edgars found the court on White Rock’s side and Leapfrog took the set 15-10. Leapfrog’s win means White Rock’s winning streak has been broken.
The first match of the night saw Unite the Union face the Generali Pumas. With only five players at 7 o’clock, the Puma’s thought they may have to forfeit the match. With a sixth player arriving to Beau Sejour late, Unite the Union’s captain Gemma Nicolle displayed great sportsmanship as she allowed the match to be played competitively. The match was played and Unite the Union took the crown as they won 2 sets to 1.
The same night saw RB Coquelin face the Generali Panthers and Unite the Union go head to head with the Generali Pumas. RB Coquelin started in commanding form opening up a 13-3 lead with excellent net skimming serving from player of the match and stand in captain Carla Marley. Generali played some well-rounded attacking volleyball but RB Coquelin were too strong and won the first set convincingly.
RB’s Jerseyman Stuart Black was subbed off in the second set allowing young CJ Elmy to take his place this seemed to unsettle their team. Generali’s player of the match Carlos Laverello was building up the attack allowing his spikers to find holes in the RB Coquelin court. The set could have gone either way but RB did just enough to win in the match in 2 straight sets with a 25-23 scoreline.
The current league table stands with White Rock in top place, closely followed by Leapfrog. Having won the same amount of matches, the top teams are only separated by league points so every match is crucial. Unite the Union remain in third position.
Men’s Volleyball Match
In the first Men’s match of 2017, Phill Loveridge's Pirate Ponies coming up against Sam Loveridge's Drop The L in a game many were labeling the 'battle of the Loveridges'.
Despite coming behind the Pirate Ponies in the pre-Christmas Steve Le Poidevin Vase league, Drop the L went into the match with enthusiasm and determination.
A strong start from Drop the L saw Edgars Zalcmanis connected well with accurate sets from man of the match, Josh Martel. This frontcourt partnership aided the team to win the first set 25-19.
Despite narrowly losing the first set, Pirate Ponies came out stronger in the second. Andy Maiden and Rene Martel supplying pinpoint sets for outside hitters Tom Clements and Ponies' player of the match David Bartram, to attack with gusto. Drop the L came back with some excellent defensive work and convincing attacking play by CJ Elmy however, Pirate Ponies snatched the second set with a 25-21 win, making the score even with one set each.
The third set was another close encounter, with point-for-point play. The match eventually tied at 17-17, meaning it was all to play for. Former Jersey player, Stu Black, now proudly wearing the green and white of the Pirate Ponies, fired powerful shots through the middle to give the Ponies a 25-19 win.
Drop The L's Gashirai Masvikeni impressed in the fourth set with some powerful jump serves. Unfortunately for his team, this could not prevent Pirate Ponies taking a 21-15 lead. Drop The L showed great resilience in getting back into the game but ultimately lost the fourth and final set 25-23, resulting in Pirate Ponies winning the match 3-1.
The night also saw a convincing win for Zedra over BWK. After the first night of men’s matches, Zedra begin at the top of the table with Pirate Ponies following in second.
Ladies League Match Report
Blue Monday rung true for Happy Feet during their depute in the women’s volleyball league. On what was dubbed the ‘most depressing’ day of the year, Happy Feet went head-to-head with Nashcopy. Happy Feet, a new team in the women’s league is comprised of a number of ladies that play in the mixed league. Having played together before, they started with confidence and promise. With the absence of their captain, Jen Lindfield, Nashcopy had a slow start off the blocks and at 6-0 they were forced to take their first time-out. They came back on court with determination and slowly clawed back the points however; it was too little too late for Nashcopy as Happy Feet took the first set 25-16.
Nashcopy changed their line up for the second set to bring on Maja Platisa. Emily Gledhill displayed some great pick-ups, supporting her fellow players to play three-touch volleyball. Player of the match Gemma Nicolle also took centre stage with some excellent setting allowing her teammates to make a strong attack. Nashcopy took the set second set 25-19.
Nashcopy took the momentum of the second set into the third and despite Happy Feet's best efforts with great backcourt play from Caroline Langlois and tactical attacks from Kathryn Angliss, Nashcopy took the third set 25-23.
The start of the fourth set looked as though Nashcopy would comfortably take the set and finish the game with a 7 point lead until Happy Feet's player of the match, Kit Hollingworth took to the service box. With the score at 17-9 Nashcopy struggled to break Hollingworth's serve and 11 points later Nashcopy were down 20-17. Nashcopy managed to edge back into the lead but after losing a match point Happy Feet snatched the set away 26-24 and forced a deciding fifth set.
With both teams fighting hard for the match it was point for point and at 11-10 Happy Feet were up. However, with some consistent serving from Nicolle and precise hits from Tyler Thorne, Nashcopy took the set 15-12 and therefore won the match 3 sets to 2.
It was a late start for the second of the ladies matches for the evening and it was Itchy Feet's turn to face Ricoh. Much like the first match, this game was evenly balanced with point-for-point play from the outset. The first set saw Ricoh take the lead as they narrowly won 26-24. Unfortunately for Itchy Feet, Ricoh carried on with the same momentum they had in the first set and with excellent setting and front court play displayed by young Becky Gauvain, Ricoh took the second set with a comfortable 25 points to 14. This did not dishearten the Itchy Feet side who came into the third set with determination to take the match to 5 sets. Itchy's Carly Tucknott controlled the court with some un-returnable over arm serves. Ricoh took a while to settle into the third after a change of their line up saw playing coach and captain Carla Martel on the bench. Itchy Feet took advantage of this change and won the third set 26-24.
The forth set began at quarter to 11 in the evening and was all to play for. Itchy Feet had one last chance to level the playing score and it was Ricoh's chance to win. With Beau Sejour closing at 11pm, Ricoh had the pressure to either win or the game could be forfeited. Despite the late night and tiresome umpires, who played in the previous match, both teams battled on and Itchy were determined not to lose. It was point-for-point running up to the end and with a fabulous teamwork Ricoh took the set 25-22, finishing the match with a 3-2 win at 11:10pm.
The women's league begins with Ricoh at the top of the table and Nashcopy following closely behind.