The 10s team played in the Adidas Youth Jamboree this past Sunday. It was an exciting day for us because we just introduced a libero into our line-up! Our first match we did great, beating Madison United in two tough sets - 26-24 in both. We then played OVC and took it to three sets but lost in a close match. Ultimately, we took first in silver overall which was great for the day and they handled the new line-up like they'd been doing it all season. It's pretty awesome to think back to where this team started and where they are now. They are really striving for three-hits on every play and even have a good number of hits off of good sets. In our team huddle prior to our last set for silver, we talked about giving our very B.E.S.T. and they really delivered. They even came up with a B.E.S.T. cheer. Shout out to everyone for passing great and especially to Nora for embracing the libero spot!
We battled to the end yesterday at the Adidas Youth Jamboree. We finished 3rd in the Gold Bracket at this tournament! Super fun. We continue to see growth in every player out on the court and our transitions in the front and back row are coming along! We've been working really hard on court awareness and knowing our roles on the team in the different spots on the court. We awarded Leilah as our Avacado Star Player for her 13 in a row serving streak and her great passing/court awareness! Congrats Leilah! My 2 favorite moments of the day were winning against Sting Silver and against EVC. Our longest game of the season 31-29, beating EVC was a nail biter as we went back and forth with the serves and the hustle! Then winning against any Sting team always feels really good! We took them to 3; 25-14, 14-25, 15-13. Also a nail biter. Oh, and of course a coaching celebrity sighting for me always makes for a great tournament day. Kelly Sheffield was in the house! Always great to see him!
We competed in our first U13 tournament this year and we came out of it tougher, faster, smarter, and more aggressive than the coaches could have hoped for. We were seeded 14th out of a total of 16 teams. We began the day a little bit nervous facing a noticeably taller 13's team from 414 Milwaukee. We got our feet wet in the first set and navigated to a respectable first set loss. This boost of confidence led us to a very impressive 2nd set win in which we were in control for the entire set. In the deciding 3rd set, against the overall number 2 seed, we allowed too many runs and gave away the match. Despite this setback, the girls realized that they would be able to play with anyone in the gym. We proceeded to handle our next two opponents in pool play by downing the Premier 13-2's team and Burlington Elite 13's. We certainly played some of our best, most crisp, volleyball of the season. Our competition required us to really step our game up. We were incredible from the service lines with girls attacking zones with mixed in runs from our jump servers. Our ability to stay in system on a regular basis against stronger teams was crucial to our success. Lastly, the hustle and determination the girls showed was recognized by coaches and parents of other teams who caught glimpses of our group. As a result of our play, we ended up making it to the gold bracket (As we have done in every event) and faced a strong and tall Premier 13-1. We ultimately came up short against the eventual tournament winners 22-25, 24-26. The girls were saddened by the result. While coaches don't really enjoy seeing their players struggling emotionally when they lose, it was also a sign of their care for the game, their teammates, and the opportunity. The coaches, and parents, are so proud of how the girls competed. We were the youngest team there (looked like it, too) but we showed so much grit and determination as well as a willingness to be coached. We are excited to see what is in store over the next month: The goals for the team have certainly been elevated, and that is what the players strive for!
This weekend 12 Black competed in the Jr. Madness Tournament. We played extremely well in pool play, dominating the first match and then winning our our second match in a nail biting fashion. In that exciting match, we fought to win the second set 26-24 and then came from behind in the third set to win 16-14. This allowed us move onto the the gold bracket challenge match, where we had a heartbreaking loss (14-16 in the third set). We got the chance to go outside and enjoy the beautiful weather on our breaks and then finished up our day playing in the championship of the silver bracket. Overall, we are proud of how the girls persevered through some tough matches and always played hard.
#ShoutOut to Laila for taking on the challenge of setting for our team while one of our other players was sick!
This weekend we played up at a 16s tournament. The team had a solid start to the day, taking first place in our pool. First game was against Eclipse, and we were able to take control the game on our side, winning 25-12 and 25-8. The second matchup was against Adversity, and we continued to play the game our way, winning 25-12 and 25-17. Our defense was strong, we covered the court no matter what speed the ball was, and our offense was able to consistently put points on the board. We then met up with the I AM 16 white team and had a fun competitive game, which finished with a another win for us, sending us to the gold bracket.
In the semi finals we played Sporting MKE and had to work hard for our win, 25-17 and 25-23. The championship was a tough match against the Midwest Penguins, where we took the first set at 27-25, then lost the second and third 25-15 and 15-9.s
#ShoutOut to Meredith who led the team in aces in the first half of the day, and Lilly for hitting 3 overpasses from the opponents straight down to the 5 ft line in the semi finals.
We saw improvements in our defense, and we were able to change up our offense to win many of our games. Looking forward to Badger Region in a few weeks!
Daylight savings did not affect the teams sleep. Girls were ready to play at 8:00 am. We started strong, hitting hard, passing well, serving consistently, creating difficulties to our opponent, which at first seemed stronger than they were. They presented good moments, but our team was able to handle well some adversities and finish the first set with a victory. The second set started, and the energy was not the same. The opponent team took advantage of it and got an early lead on the set allowing them to play with less pressure. We were able to closed the gap, but not enough the win the set. The third set was different…the girls realized that they could let the win go away. They started strong and got a good lead right away. At the end, the first win of the morning was on the books.
Even though our second opponent of the morning was better than our previous one, we made than look better than they were. From the beginning of the match, we could not function as a team. We got stuck in several moments of the match and could not find our way out, both individually and collectively. The consequence of our poor performance led to quick loss.
We did not have too much time to recover from our loss. We played right away, so the girls knew that they would have to step up if they want a place on the gold bracket. The attitude was back, but our actions did not fully matched our desire to win. We were very inconsistent and trailed both first and second sets most of the time. Luckily, at the moments that count, the team was able to excel and execute the game plan. It was not a pretty match to watch, but we got the win!
Then we get to the semi-finals of the gold bracket. On our path, an opponent, Eclipse VC, that we faced 4 weeks ago at the Fond du Lac tournament. A good team, with 2 tall outside hitters and with a consistent defense system. The memories of our last encountered returned to Racine. Even though we wanted write a different history, the team could not resist the strong start imposed by the opponent. We encountered several difficulties on passing and consequently connecting with our hitters. When we were able to execute a good offense, the opponent defense was there to make our life harder. Even winning the two longest rallies of the set, the team was not able to finish the set ahead. The second set ended, score wise, like the first. But the attitude and competitiveness of the team was totally different. We chased balls, dove on the court, hit and server hard, and fought every point. All points won the opponents were earned rather than give to them. Despite the loss, the team finished on a good spirit, showing that we can reach better results forward. The third place on the gold bracket was the highest achievement of the season yet!!!