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Results from Round 1, May 8th 2022

State League Men defeated Southern Cross 3-2

SL men faced Southern Cross in their first game of the season. The new look southern cross team came out strong with ex-Balcatta player Artem fired up to bring it to his old teammates. The boys rode out the wave and won a tight first set. The foot came off the pedal and southern cross took advantage winning the 2nd and 4th set bringing it to a 5th. This was enough to bring out the best in the young Balcatta team who dominated the 5th set. Tom Heptinstall was a standout showing why he has been selected to attend the Australian Mens camp next week. Tighter than expected but happy with a W to start the season.

State League Women defeated UWA 3-1

Cats women's got up 3-1 . A nervous start to first game of the year saw a tight first set which the Cat's girls gave up a little lead, and didn't quite have the time to reel it back in losing to 23. But a slight tweak to the rotation and some additional focus on Set 2 saw the Cats ladies get on top and build a strong lead on the back of some confident and consistent play and win decisively. In the third set, the team put themselves in a good spot to make some digs but a few defensive errors gave UWA a chance to rebuild their confidence. Then Cats debutante Tessa Browne stepped to the service line and put on six points in a row and built a lead the team would not give up the rest of the set. The fourth starting in a similar fashion with Chloe Street serving strongly for five points until a UWA Timeout broke her rhythm. With a focus on establishing the middles, Balcatta made three beautiful middle kills early in the set to build momentum, and another service run by Tessa put the set beyond doubt. The last three sets stamped some dominance on the win, with the Balcatta ladies still waiting on three players to return from travel this week. Recognition also for Olivia Botica, who contributed to the strong serving performance on Sunday, including making a clutch serve (when the team was set point down) after being subbed in to serve as her first touch in State League for Balcatta!

State League Reserves Men defeated Fremantle 3-1

The SLR boys had a good 3-1 win against Fremantle. We had a few players out with Covid/ isolation including Kamie. The team adjusted well to the required changes which included Mitch setting and having no bench. The whole team played well but Luke was the best on court as a dominant attacking weapon. A special mention to the boys who made their reserves debut; Lucas , Finlay and Jahuy

State League Reserves Women lost to Southern Cross 2-3

SLR girls lost in 5 in a very tight game to SX and played really well for their first time together. Don’t really really have a stand out as all played really well and I had to leave early

Division One Men defeated Fremantle 3-0

Our team started the first set with all cylinders firing taking an early lead to 15-3 thanks to an epic jump serve run of 8 points from Ari Zuvela. The set was closed quickly with Domenic “The Wall” Boyce banishing all offence back to whence they came. This continued into the second set with punishing attacks from power hitter Dylan Almeida and Captain James Bourke in combination with sweep level defence from Dan Bendotti and Jordan Fynn proving too much for our opponents. The 3rd set started with the opposition refusing to go quietly into the night. They put up a great fight until Sam Goody decided to crush a 9 point run of toppies to finish out the set. Of course none of this would have been possible without the pinpoint setting and combination control of our gun setter Richi Samuel. Well done team. Great start to the season.

Division One Women defeated Fremantle 3-1

19x25 25x11 25x19 25x14 Nothing to add. First set still a bit nervous but all the team work together in the next sets. 👍🏻 Amy had good hits,

Division Two Men lost to United 2-3

The div2 boys came out and won the first 2 sets fairly easily and were looking strong to take the 3rd also. Unfortunately, they lost the next 3. They looked like a completely different team compared to the first 2 sets. I think it was a combination of being tired (we had no subs) and taking our foot off the pedal too much. Not too concerning though, if we are able to play like we did in the first 2 sets more consistently then we will be looking strong. We had Tom come up from Div4 and play middles fro us. He got a few big blocks and kills, he will definitely become a very strong player with some more experience! Id have to vote for him for player of the week.

Division Two Women defeated Fremantle 3-1

Fantastic first game for the season for our team. We had some major disruptions to overcome with our 2 setters unavailable for the game (covid and work) but Caitlin Nortmore, our reserve setter, stepped in and played her first ever game as a 5:1 setter. She did a fantastic job with some great serving, defence and setting choices. We achieved our game goals of consistent serving and active communication which led to a strong win over the reigning Div 2 champions from 2021. I can't wait to see what this Cats team can do in 2022.

Division Three Men defeated Fremantle 3-2

Hard fought 5 set win.

Division Three Women defeated Fremantle 3-1

The girls came out of the gate with a bang for their first game together. With players missing due to Covid, two Div 4 development players stepped up to support Div 3 and fitted seamlessly with the established team. This was a majority of the teams first senior League game, or first league game completely, so there were some learning curves with remembering rows, learning how to sub on/off correctly and which way to switch courts each set, but this did not stop the girls from smashing Freo in the first set 25-5. Once Freo got into a rhythm they provided a bit more competition, but we still secured the second set with 25-20. Due to the closeness of the last set, energy was low and Fremantle gained momentum, taking the 3rd set from us 14-25, but after a rev up the team regained their confidence in themselves and ended the game taking the 4th set with 25-10. We had a couple of stand out players, with junior Kate and Hanna from Div 4 smashing some service streaks, and Nicole Lamont in her first game as a setter played exceptionally well. After watching these girls at the very first preseason training, and seeing their performance on game day it is fantastic to see how quickly their volleyball skills have improved, and the team synergy they have developed already. Definitely in for a good season!

Division Four Men defeated Fremantle 3-0

First set was more of a warm up set getting used to the first game of the season, losing alot of points to tips and team errors but still managed to pull out a win 22-25. From there we adapted to the tips and pushes and started calling out more allowing us to pull out ahead and show that we are the better team running things like the middle and even a combination B+3 attack at the winning the next two sets 25-16 and 25-8 respectively

Division Four Women defeated Southern Cross 3-2

The girls got off to a really good start straight out the gates. Everyone was really motivated and focused. It was a shame we lost our first set which was really close, ending in 25-23. After the break the girls seemed to switch on and took the second set 25-21. They lost the third set 25-20, but something clicked after, they became more relaxed and focused and they managed to dominate the next two sets 25-14 and 15-7. I was really impressed with captain Alice who had a massive impact on the team and always kept the morale high and even pointed out things I didn’t notice. The girls really get along well together and team chemistry is incredible I think a player that really stood out is Alice, she really rounds out the team and even though it’s her first WAVL season she is showing good leadership skills and a very good attitude, she is definitely capable of being team captain. A notable point is when she hustled very hard to a ball and managed to hit it over behind her and get a point. I’m looking forward to the rest of the season

Division Five Men defeated lost to ECU Blue

We lost 0-3, they were close sets other than the first one, we even almost came back from a 10 point deficit in the second set. The boys were alright I think they just had first game jitters and we’ll be back stronger next week!
We also didn’t have our setter so that was hard too.

Division Six Men - Bye round

Player of the Week.

Division Two Men lost one of their middle hitters before the games even started so an outside hitter was moved to the middle and things were looking promising. That new middle hitter was unavailable for the season opener so another outside hitter was earmarked to play middle. That player got Covid, leaving the team potentially playing with 6 including the libero becoming a hitter. At the 11th hour the decision was made to use a development player from Division Four and despite losing a tough match in 5 sets, having the fill in middle player was a huge benefit to the team.

This is why Thomas Rear gets this week's Player of the Week. He has a great attitude on the court, fitted in well with the team straight away and played such a great game! Thanks again Tom!