The Blaze girls continue their success with a win against Portadown Aztec Warriors.
A third win for the home team was well deserved but Aztecs did their best to put up a good fight against the fearless blaze side. Needless to say, they kept her lit.
The Blaze girls looked impressive in the warm up and the Aztecs knew they would be put under pressure throughout the game.
Blaze started off well in the first set with some impressive sets by Hannah Witherow that were killed on court by Kerry Kirkpatrick through behind and Nicola Cochrane through the middle.
Aztecs put up a good defence with some fantastic pick ups from Melissa Traynor. Strong serving from Amy Weathers shook the Blaze girls for a run of points but with a time out and a bit of communication from passers Blaze managed to get Amy off the line. This left the end of the set close with the scores 20-20.
Susan McAuley was able to finish the set with a run of hard, near impossible to pass serves. The set finished 25-21 to the local Ballymoney team.
Blaze went into the second set on a high securing several points against Aztecs but they responded with some steady passing and tactical hits which threw the blaze girls off their game.
Tips into the middle of court caught out the blaze girls but they adjusted and gave them a taste of their own medicine. The two teams now neck and neck were both fighting hard but the home team knew it was up to them to push ahead to win this set more convincingly than the first.
Reliable serving and smart placement of the ball secured them the set with a final score of 25-17.
Blaze hoped this would be the third and final set and fought hard from the outset to secure it. Aztecs however stepped up their game. Hitting from Amy Weathers on the outside challenged Blaze and forced them to put up a stronger cross court block. Tactical tipping continued but Blaze girl Hannah Witherow chased and dived to help out her team mates with a high enough set to get the ball over. Some substitutions on the Blaze side resulted in a new wave of attack from Clare Scott and Ellen Monteith. They rose to the occasion with some fantastic back corner hits, unable to be returned by the capable Aztec defence. Towards the end of the set rally time increased as both sides grew more determined. Aztecs had the lead for a short while but Ballmoney soon fought back to win the set and match 25-19.
Thank you to referees Johnny McClenaghan and Jonathan Workman. As well as scorers Callum Currie and Matthew Boyd.
Report by Kerry Kirkpatrick and Caroline Goodliffe.
A Night at the Races will take place this Friday, November 23rd at 8pm.
The event will take place in Ma Kelly’s, Ballymoney.
All the proceeds are in aid of Ballymoney Blaze Volleyball Club. Everyone welcome.