The Bishop Michael Eldon Warriors, St. George’s Jaguars, Sunland Stingers, and Tabernacle Falcons each moved one step closer to the finals of the GBSSAA: Oriel Knowles/Rozena Nesbitt High School Volleyball Championship this past Tuesday, November 11.
The Warriors took on the Falcons, while the Stingers went up against the Jaguars yesterday, November 13, to determine who will play for all the marbles this coming Friday, November 15 at the St. George’s Gymnasium. However, those results were not known up to press time.
Also on that day, the senior boys’ semi-finals were determined when the Warriors took on the Falcons, while the Lucaya International (LIS) Buccaneers went head-to-head with the Stingers.
The defending junior boys champions the Warriors got past the Sister Mary Patricia Russell Panthers during Tuesday’s quarterfinal round at the St. George’s Gym, 2-0.
Head coach Allen Hall expressed post-game that the recent win came down to the team’s ability to flex their focus at all times.
“The name of the game today was focus. It was a matter of keeping focus. It was hard for my guys to get in a rhythm - Sister Mary Patricia put up a good fight, but the rhythm just wasn’t there for our guys. It was just a matter of them keeping their head in the game and just remembering the fundamentals.”
The size of the Warriors’ frontline was too much to overcome for the smaller Panthers. Hall stressed that once his frontline players keep that same intensity, defensively they will be in good shape.
“The big guys up front on the blocks on the defensive side of the game were key. The faster guys were quick with their hands on the backcourt. Defense is going to be important for us and make a difference for us as we move closer to the championships.
“Our offense - the attacking part of the game is always there for us but defense will definitely be a point of emphasis.”
The Warriors were in control in the early stages of the first set and led the Panthers 8-6.
The BMES lead eventually ballooned, 12-7 with the Warriors looking to put the finishing touches on a fundamentally sound first set outing.
The Warriors kicked things into overdrive as their offense flustered the Panthers, which allowed the Warriors to run away with the first set, 19-11.
The Warriors set the tone for the second set scoring six-straight points from service. However that didn’t phase the Panthers as they found themselves back in it with four straight points. To trail the defending champs, 4-6.
The Warriors responded by scoring two-straight points to go ahead 8-4. However, the Panthers’ defense was impenetrable, allowing them to score four-straight points to tie the game at eight apiece.
Deeper into the second and final set the Warriors held a 17-13 advantage which proved to be enough of a lead to eventually put the Panthers away 19-13.
Following that contest at the St. George’s Gym, the Jaguars took down the Buccaneers but needed three sets to do so. The final score was 2-1.
The Jags took an early 5-0 lead before giving up their first point to the Bucs, which made it a 5-1 game.
The Jags lead, however, grew 9-3 before LIS began to apply pressure. Nonetheless, the Jags held a two point 11-9 lead halfway through the set.
Both teams found themselves tied, 14-14 trying to solve each other’s defense. The back and forth, which included a few lead changes, eventually culminated with the Bucs winning the first set 21-19.
The Jaguars regrouped strongly and were a completely different team as they dominated their way to a 19-8 victory in the second set.
After building a 6-1 lead to start the third set, the Jags eventually knocked off the Bucs, 15-7 to win the sudden death set.
As for the Stingers, they made quick work of the Jack Hayward Junior Stars, 2-0 over at the Jack Hayward Gym. The Stingers dominated the first set, 19-5 and eventually swept that match with a 19-2 triumph in the second set.
The Falcons had their hands full with the Eight Mile Rock Blue Jays but in the end won that match 2-0 (19-15; 19-16).