John Syer Trophy
Edinburgh 3-2 Su Ragazzi: 23-25: 25-19: 19-25: 25-19:15-11
The Suettes made the approach to the win-lose-competition line and stepped back just when they had to take the final step. The City of Edinburgh side played fine volleyball, but on this occasion they seemed to lack an edge, and we will never have a better chance to challenge the Edinburgh monopoly……
Edinburgh dominated the early stages as the Su passing unit celebrated Christmas early and gave away gifts galore! In previous times this would have been the cue for an immediate collapse, but the Glasgow side have added a bit of steel to their armoury and this resilience left Edinburgh wondering how they managed to lose the first set, despite controlling the momentum throughout.
Su chanced their luck in the second set and, once more fell behind. It required massive effort from the side, especially Alex Dickenson, to bring Su back into a winning position. Just when a shock seemed to be in sight the ‘Su failing’ reappeared and error upon error gave Edinburgh the opening they were searching for. Like the good side they are, they said ‘thank you’ and leveled the game at 1-1.
The Su bench had allowed starting six players a break to prepare for the third set, by challenging Edinburg in the latter stages of the second set. The stability Su sought was temporarily given through Laura McReadie. This passing improvement allowed Su to access first tempo and this key factor meant Edinburgh had a mountain to climb, and they were found wanting.
So, all that was needed was a similar mindset to leave the Champions with their crown dethroned. They took the challenge and showed why they are still the best team in the country. At 15-15 they were teetering and Su offered them the ray of light with six successive hitting errors. Edinburgh simply took the opportunity and closed out the set for 2-2
So, fifth set was a new ball game against Edinburgh. Both sides traded side outs to 9-9 when Su over revved and made four back-to-back hitting errors. At 13-9 their backs were to the wall. Two big plays brought Su back to life and at 13-11, we thought, why not? We will never know as Su capitulated and let Edinburgh complete their recovery to take the match 3-2 and Su to ponder, “what might have been”
Jets III 0-3 Su II 16-25: 11-25: 16-25
Congratulations are in order to the Suette Babies as they progressed, unbeaten in three sets, to qualify for the Scottish Cup proper. Jets tried hard but they were unable to suppress the effervescent Claire Crowe and Priya Gill. The poise that Lucy Scouler demonstrates is astonishing considering where she was, this time last year, as she runs a balanced offense.
That was challenged by the youth, energy and will to win demonstrated by Megan Taylor and the “baby libero” Raveen Gill. They took the pressure off the side by strong serving and passing skillfully when the chips were down.
The Baby Suettes shrugged off the challenge from the Jets in the opening set and then took them apart in the second set. The players gave a demonstration of excellence that was led by Jenn Downs, who continues to offer quality leadership to the side.
Marketa Hola, who displayed the missing link that the first team requires, delivered the final nail in the Jet’s coffin. She supplied net domination through power and precision point after point.
Well, eight from eight and without the injured Elise, Michelle, Megan and Emma. The future is bright. The future is Su.
John Syer Trophy