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Photo by John Tonin

THROUGH THE BLOCK – Rams attack Barrett Furchner, 46, finds the gap between Warriors blockers Griffon Bisson’s, 4, and Alex Schultz’s, hands during second set Supervolley action at Porter Creek.

Rams avenge girls’ loss, beat Warriors 3-0

The second game of the Supervolley season-opener saw the Porter Creek Rams and F.H. Collins Warriors boys’ teams square off on Thursday afternoon.

By John Tonin on October 4, 2019

The second game of the Supervolley season-opener saw the Porter Creek Rams and F.H. Collins Warriors boys’ teams square off on Thursday afternoon.

The Rams avenged the girls’ loss and defeated the Warriors in straight sets 3-0.

In the first set of the best of five match, neither team found their rhythm. The serve-receive game for both teams was there but the Rams and Warriors couldn’t find their offensive footing.

The teams traded points throughout but it was the Rams who made fewer mistakes and pulled ahead by three points late in the set to lead 20-17. From there, the teams played even volleyball but the Warriors couldn’t close the gap.

Taking a high-ball outside, Porter Creek’s left-side, and player of the game, Cameron Ryles hit an off-speed ball around the block which found the deep corner to win the set for the Rams 25-21.

Rams coach Derek Bilodeau said the first set dictated the tone for the team the rest of the way.

“I think that they played pretty consistent throughout the whole match,” said Bilodeau. “They didn’t really have any real highs or real lows in the game. They just kept an even pace through the game; made their serves, made their passes and just played from there.”

The second set saw the action pick up as both teams started to attack the ball strong. The defensive intensity also picked up for each side and some entertaining rallies featuring impressive hustle-plays ensued.

Rams attacker, Barrett Furchner, hit some heavy attacks and Ryles continued to find the open space around the blocks as Porter Creek pulled ahead 17-15 forcing the Warriors to burn a timeout.

F.H. came out strong after the quick break and rattled off two points to tie it, but Porter Creek regained the lead and did not relinquish it. Navaro Davies’ serve found the seam between the Warriors passers and the ace gave the Rams the second set win 25-23.

Bilodeau said playing consistently has been the message to the team in the early goings of the season.

“That’s sort of what we’ve been touting with our team,” said Bilodeau. “We got some new players, playing new positions, playing new roles on the team compared to what they played last year.

“They are learning where they fit on the team. So sticking to basics and staying consistent throughout the game is the key to what we tried to do tonight.”

In the third set, the Rams continued their steady play. Their game wasn’t flashy but they played sound defence, passed well on serve receive and the attackers hit smart shots, either to the deep corners or off the blockers’ hands and out of bounds.

The Warriors continued to fight and got some monster hits from middle Alex Shultz and left-side Austin Shaw, but they couldn’t overcome the even pace of the Rams.

Rams middle Jesse Goodman put the game away with a quick attack and Porter Creek took the final set 25-21.

The Rams will play the Crusaders tonight, a team Bilodeau said is quite strong. He said the team’s net-play, how they read and react on blocking, is what they will need to improve as the season progresses.

Setter Griffon Bisson was the player of the game for the Warriors. Bisson played strong defence and got all the attackers involved in the offence.

F.H. will have some time to regroup after the loss. Their next game against the Crusaders is in two weeks.

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