The University of Nottingham (UoN) Men’s Volleyball Team beat Nottingham Trent University’s Men’s Volleyball Team in straight sets (25-18, 25-22, 25-13) on Sunday afternoon at Clifton Campus. The victory takes UoN into a 2-1 lead in the series, having drawn level earlier in the day with the women’s volleyball team completing their own straight sets victory.
As the two sets of players warmed up in the Lee Westwood Sports Hall, anticipation was high, with everyone eager to see a more competitive match than was seen in the preceding women’s match. What ensued was definitely a tighter affair, with a significant increase in the number of rallies between the two teams helping to increase the spectacle.
Set one started well for UoN, who took an early three point lead that remained throughout the set. At the first timeout the score was 14-9, and 20-14 to UoN at the second timeout. Two key players stood out in the performance. They were Sam Keshmiri and Christopher Kapernick, whose power and height enabled UoN to clinch the set 25-18.
‘Trent were only five points away from levelling the match’
Despite being a set down, Trent were still very much in contention. UoN rotated their line-up between sets and began the 2nd set terribly, going 6-1 down before the first timeout was called. From here UoN were struggling to restore parity and trailed for large periods. Trent were only 5 points away from levelling the match with a lead of 20-17 just after the last timeout was called.
Despite encouragement from the Trent home support, UoN rallied to take 8 out of the next 10 points through their main man Keshmiri, claiming a very close set 25-22. Trent can feel disappointed they did not win that set as they were ahead for most of it; a fact that seemed to linger on the minds of the Trent players, going into the third set at 2-0 down.
From here, a Trent comeback never seemed on the cards as UoN closed the victory by winning a very comfortable final set 25-13. UoN gained control of the 3rd set very early on, storming into an 11-1 lead and never looking back, sealing the match to claim the point on offer.
‘We Had To Dig Deep’
UoN are in a much higher league than Trent in BUCS, and this showed as they never looked like losing the game, despite struggling in the 2nd set. Captain Salvatore LaCavera praised the team after the match, saying that they ‘had to dig deep’ in the 2nd set, but stated there was a lot of trust and belief in the team that they could pull through.
With two victories for the University of Nottingham’s volleyball teams on Sunday, they now take a 2-1 lead heading into the men’s and women’s futsal games on Monday evening. Be sure to get down to all the remaining events this week and support the Green and Gold!
Image courtesy of University of Nottingham Sport and twitter.com