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Malory Eagles volleyball club

Middlesbrough College vs Men's First
Saturday 27 March, Middlesbrough College, Middlesbrough, North Yorkshire

The importance of this match to their title pursuit inevitably played a part in Malory’s faltering 3-0 win over Middlesbrough.  The Eagles have achieved the last needed win for this year’s title.

An early start followed by the long journey up to North Yorkshire looked to have sapped the Eagles’ energy as they warmed up for their last away match of the 2009/10 season.  All pressure was on the young shoulders of Ashley Trodden as the Eagles travelled with just a single setter but he looked determined to guide his team to success and further strengthen his challenge for the first setter spot.  In a slow start to set one, Middlesbrough inched ahead helped by the excellent hands of setter Kieran Sowden.  Boro got to 10 points first but a sequence of missed serves (precipitated by a well timed Jefferson Williams timeout) let Malory back into the game.  The set continued evenly with both teams making frequent and costly errors until Malory steadied just enough to claim the set 25 - 23.

Set two again started slowly this time Malory inching ahead of their hosts but unable to display the flair and control that had placed them at the top of Division One.  The Eagles continued to grind their way through the set with excellent play-making by Trodden and mastery of the front court by Alex Bialokoz.  Timeouts from Boro failed to hold back the Eagles who upped a gear to take the set by a comfortable 25 - 19 margin.

Dankielson Westphal replaced Mark Brown for set three but the Eagles remained unable to take control.  Middlesbrough setter Sowden continued to distribute his attackers effectively, challenging the Malory defence.  An excellent serve receive and attacking game from Luciano Pinter and continued front court guile from Bialokoz saw the Eagles hold off Boro’s spirited efforts to again just take the set 25 - 23.

Although the losers, Middlesborough can console themselves in a mid-table finish to their first Division One season.  With Sheffield (the only other title contender) two points adrift and one game remaining, the Eagles (through their far superior set difference) can turn up and lose their last match, at home to London Docklands.  Malory’s players can smell the brasso on Volleyball England’s Division One cup.

South London Press - Download
London Volleyball Association - Link
Wandsworth Guardian - Link

 

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