JVC Reign (3-0) 3-2 Trolley 5 HITT Venom (2-1)
MVPs: Leah Shevkenek and Maya Frew
On Monday night JVC Reign pulled off an intense 5-set victory against Trolley 5 HITT Venom to secure their third consecutive win.
Venom Middle Blocker Tasha Holness set the tone for the match early on, earning her team’s first point with a massive stuff block on Reign Outside Hitter Andrea Price. The teams fought point for point and met up at 15-15 mid-set. Venom slowly snuck away from their opponents and Tiffany Proudfoot closed off the first set with a kill off the hands of the outside blockers to make it 25-17.
Tasha Holness came out to play again in the second set, putting the ball to the floor on a quick 51 dished out by Leah Shevkenek. Following a close battle throughout the set, the teams were caught at 23-23, when Andrea Price displayed her versatility, delivering a hard cross shot to the floor, followed by a roll shot over the hands of the blockers to close off the set.
Set three was another battle to end, with Julia Zonneveld stepping up to tie it up again at 23-23 with a well-placed shot down the line to send the teams into a time-out. Both teams showcased their gritty defense and effective out-of-system attacking to push the set to 28-26, with Reign again coming out on top.
Venom fought back in the fourth to secure the set-victory 25-19, but their opponent was not about to give up their undefeated title. Reign stepped into the fifth set with confidence, forcing Venom to call time-out at 5-1. Leah Shevkenek found Kylie Willis in the middle for a quick 51 tip over the hands of the blockers to put this lengthy match to rest.
You can catch Round 4 action next week on Tuesday, July 3 in the SAIT Gymnasium, as HITT Venom will seek to bounce back from their first loss, while the dominant JVC Reign will look to extend their undefeated streak.
CMS Crush (1-2) 3-1 Cold Garden Tropikills (0-3)
MVPs: Megan Brennan and Abby Spratt
Game 2 on Monday night featured the 1-2 CMS Crush vs. the Cold Garden Tropikills, who are still in search of their first match win.
Both teams got off to a good start and met in the middle at 15-15, but the Tropikills pushed for a 5-point run to push the set to 20-15 and Crush was unable to catch up. A kill by Outside Hitter Jade Van Dyke and a service ace from Victoria Dakin put the finishing touches on set 1 at 25-17.
CMS Crush came back to fight in the second set though, with a couple of big kills from Crush outside attackers Hilary Howe and Megan Brennan. The Tropikills were gritty on defense, but ultimately were unable to contain the power of the Crush outside hitters, as Hilary Howe put away a hard cross right-side swing to cap the set at 25-20.
Crush setter Olivia Furlan started the third set with a couple of laser-beam serves, achieving her second ace of the match and the Tropikills got into trouble early-on with a 6-2 deficit. A couple of unforced errors on the Crush side of the net and a big block and kill by Jillian Lynch in the middle gave the Tropikills enough momentum to cut the lead to one, but it wasn’t enough as Hilary Howe showed up with a huge block to end the set.
Cold Garden pushed Crush to their limits in the fourth set, attempting to survive for a fifth set. The teams competed point-for-point alongside the lively crowd and took at time-out at 24-24. Crush outside hitters Hilary Howe, Megan Brennan, and Miranda Dawe came in clutch at the end to secure the match victory at 30-28.
Round 4 kicks off on Tuesday, July 3 in the SAIT Gymnasium. Cold Garden will be taking on Venom at 6:30 pm and JVC Reign will be challenging CMS Crush.
WM Greenbacks (2-1) 3-0 Dinos (1-2)
MVPs: Kyle Hall, Hamish Hazelden
After three weeks of competition, the Greenbacks have placed themselves at the front of the pack as they extinguished the Dinos in a swift Round 3 opening match. The usual suspects Tim Taylor, Keith West, and Nic Dubinsky all made contributions towards the victory, but it was libero Kyle Hall who took home MVP honours. Hamish Hazelden, the Aussie rightside who will be suiting up as a University of Calgary Dino next season, was his team’s go-to option for the duration of this match and was also named match MVP.
The first set started and remained a close contest until the teams were all tied up at 20. Unfortunately for the Dinos, two of the last five Greenback points came from missed serves, another from a Nic Dubinsky ace, and Tim Taylor cleaned up the rest of it with two kills to finish it 25-22.
The Greenbacks built on that momentum throughout the second set, stretching out an early 4-point lead and never losing it. The level of Greenback consistency was too much for their opponents to handle down the stretch, and too many unforced errors by the Dinos were no help as the second set ended at an inauspicious 25-18 after a Tim Finnigan hitting error.
When it rains it pours, and the Dinos found find no respite from their troubles in Set 3. Three quick kills from outside hitter Tyler Latu’ila helped the Greenbacks establish an early 5-1 lead, and a mixture of strong Greenback serving and Dino errors compounded that lead into an insurmountable 20-7. The Dinos made one final push and brought themselves to 12 points, but the game was finally ended by a block on Alex Bader by Liam Laidlaw.
Play resumes next week on Tuesday, July 3rd. Join us for Round 4, as the teams go up against the Round 1 opponents in a few hotly-contested rematches: The Dinos will try to replicate their first week victory over the Timberjacks, and the Greenbacks will try to even up their record against the Smashing Gavels with a win.
JVC Timberjacks (1-2) 3-2 Smashing Gavels (2-1)
MVPs: Mac McNicol, Jackson Brennan
Two weeks after falling in straight sets to the Greenbacks, the Timberjacks clawed their way back from the jaws of defeat to steal a win over the previously undefeated Smashing Gavels in five sets. After losing the first two sets, JVC seemingly flipped a switch and came storming back to win the next three and put themselves in that elusive win column.
The Gavels looked as strong as ever in the opening set, pulling away after being up 17-15 to take the first one 25-18 after a Riley Friesen hitting error. Unforced errors from the Timberjacks made coming back an impossible task, as their hitters struggled to find the floor for much of the first two sets.
The Timberjacks grabbed an early lead in the 2nd but failed to hold onto it, strong serving from the Gavels making it difficult to consistently side out. The score remained tight until the very end, as the Timberjack hitters began to find their rhythm from both above the net and behind the service line, but a missed serve would be their undoing and finish the set 25-22.
The Timberjacks jumped out to another early lead in the 3rd, this time not only holding onto it but increasing it as they led 22-16 before a Smashing Gavel timeout. Aside from lefty Connor Frehlich, the Gavels were hard-pressed to find a reliable option without the attacking of Regan Fathers and couldn’t stop the Jacks from taking the third set at a convincing 25-18.
The fourth set only served as a small buffer between the third and fifth sets; JVC’s outside hitters came alive on both the block and the attack after all experienced slow starts in this match. Eventual Timberjack MVP Mac McNicol blocked Calvin Siebert on a leftside swing to end the set at 25-14 and force a deciding set.
The Smashing Gavels brought the fire early in the 5th and went up 9-4 after Taylor Arnett tipped a ball off the block of Riley Friesen. Following this the Timberjacks began firing on all cylinders and went on an incredible 11-2 run to take the 5th set and their first win of the season. Led by the serving of Graham Schmuland and Jackson Maris, the team seemed impossible to stop on offense and almost impossible to score on. The final point of the match was perhaps the biggest block of the Premier League so far, as Keaton Strom stuffed the attack of Chris Brunet out of the rightside.