Thursday, November 22, 2012

Super Sunday for the club!

Last Sunday, OVC history was made as our four women's and men's team won all their matches. That's eight games, eight victories – quite the Super Sunday. Huge congratulations to all the people who were part of it!

Let's do it again before the end of the season.

Women's 1 showed true team spirit against Maidenhead and Newbury

Ladies 1 had a tough challenge away in Newbury. With Maïté suffering a stiff neck (although beautifully wrapped up in a pink scarf), Chrissie fighting a bad cold, and Anna and Kerstin away with the NVL team, Ladies 1 were a bit thin on the ground

But the team still managed to beat Maidenhead Ladies  25–17, 25–16 and Newbury Ladies  25–10, 25–14. The two games saw Oxford Ladies 1 lead every set, taking the opportunity to practice a good serve and cover.

Fede played middle in the first game swapping with Nela in the game against Newbury. Magda was ready to switch to setter at any time to help out Maïte, and Chrissie battled on, fighting both the opposition and the cough. Everyone come together, in true team spirit!

Women's 2 win two games without dropping a set

Ladies 2 had a late match in Reading and faced Farnborough Sirens and Reading Aces. Through circumstance, we haven’t yet had a consistent team on court. But the work we have put in so far, both in training and in matches and coupled with our coaching from Seb, meant that we really began to play together as a team.

As is our habit, we were a little slow to get going in our first match against Farnborough, but it wasn't too long before we took the lead and we won the first set 25-18. Things got even better in the second set: Farnborough were never able to get into the game, and we won it convincingly, 25-10.

In our last game against Reading Aces, we had to work a bit harder – partly because we were getting tired and partly because the game became unpredictable, with many balls coming back after just one touch. But the team kept calm and continued to play volleyball, and eventually won the game 25-23, 25-22.

Well done to Hanna, who won both nominations for MVP.

Men's 1 beat arch rival Spikeos, and Basingstoke

Men's 1 had their first league matches at home in Headington. The squad consisted of Jon, Raul, Martijn, Gerard, Gabriele, Anders, Jeremy and OVC league debuts for Gareth, Roberto and Giovanni.

First match was against Spikeos, last year’s league winners. The first few exchanges went point for point, until we got into our rhythm and pulled away slowly but surely. We never looked back and played some good volleyball all-round. First set finished 25-18. In the second set, we continued to play well and got ourselves into a 16-8 lead. We then relaxed a bit too much and let them back into the set to 23-23. A good pass, set and hit got us a match point, which we converted straight away with good defensive play and a finish 25-23! Several people could have gotten the MVP award, and they voted for Raul – well deserved!

Second match was against Basingstoke. The match started off evenly as we struggled to find our level at first, until 12-12 when we pulled away comfortably to 21-13, and finished the set 25-14. We never looked in trouble in the second set and played some good volleyball despite the slower pace of the match. We won the second set 25-17, and so our second victory of the new season in the bag! MVP as voted by them: Gareth

Men's 2 pick up another two wins

Men's 2 (or Simon, Seb, Hideki, Dan, Hussain and Ghislain) made a great start in the first set against Spikeos, thanks to six stunning serves from Hideki and some great basic volleyball from the rest of the team. Then Spikeos started coming back, forcing us to take a timeout at 16–14. The timeout couldn't have been timed better – once back on court, we finished the set 25-20. In the second set, Spikeos took the lead quite quickly and the rest of the set was very tight with some very good rallies. We eventually lost the second set 25-22. However, in the third set, we took the lead early and didn't let go: after some great rallies and clean serves, we won 15-9. MVP went to our newly recruited Japanese hitter, Hideki.

In our second game against Farnborough, we took the lead quite quickly and kept playing basic effective volleyball. We then had a strong finish with seven serves in a row from Ghislain, backed up with strong and precise hits from Dan and Hideki. And we won the first set 25-18. In the second set, it was Dan's time to shine with eight strong serves. The rest of the set offered some clean and precise volleyball from everyone, and we won the second set 25-12. MVP went (again) to Hideki.

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