TWO STRAIGHT TITLES: The HO Nash Junior High School girls won the championship hardware for the second straight year in two sets against the LW Young Golden Eagles yesterday. Photos: Tenajh Sweeting/Tribune Staff
A TIME TO CELEBRATE: The pennant winning Anatol Rodgers Timberwolves won the GSSSA senior boys title after shutting down the CI Gibson Rattlers in two games.
A NARROW VICTORY: The CV Bethel Stingrays senior girls hoisted the championship hardware after sweeping the Government High School Magic 2-0 at the Kendal GL Isaacs Gymnasium.
#By TENAJH SWEETING
#Tribune Sports Reporter
#THREE teams can now revel in championship glory after winning the titles in the junior and senior divisions of the Government Secondary Schools Sports Association (GSSSA) volleyball championships yesterday at the Kendal GL Isaacs Gymnasium.
#The CV Bethel Stingrays senior girls closed out the second-seeded Government High School Magic to earn bragging rights in the senior division.
#The pennant winning Anatol Rodgers High School Timberwolves shut down last year’s defending champions – the CI Gibson Rattlers – to hoist the GSSSA volleyball senior boys’ trophy.
#The HO Nash Lions sealed the deal against the LW Young Golden Eagles for two straight titles in the junior division for their girls team.
#The Golden Eagles’ junior boys tied the best-of-three championship series 1-1 with the Timberwolves to force a win or go home game three today at 4pm.
#The Timberwolves needed three sets to complete the job but they remained poised and swept the Rattlers 2-0 yesterday evening.
#The third-seeded Rattlers came into the game in an 0-1 hole and brought the fight to the pennant winners in the first set. They claimed set one 25-20.
#In a tightly contested second set, the Rattlers seemed prepared to force a game three after leading 23-19.
#However, the newest champions stunned the Rattlers senior boys when they closed in 23-22 and proceeded to tie the score at 23. The Timberwolves then capitalised on their momentum and won set two 25-23. In the final set, the Timberwolves showed why they were atop the regular season standings jumping out to an 8-4 lead and never looking back. They nabbed the last set in convincing fashion, 15-5. The Most Valuable Player (MVP) award went to Jaron Francis of the victor.
#Theodore Hanna, head coach of the Timberwolves, told reporters on Wednesday the goal was to win it all and on Thursday despite needing three sets his team got it done.
#“I told them if they are gonna fight and back us into the corner we have to fight back. It feels great and I am overwhelmed right now,” Hanna said.
#The Stingrays wasted no time in sending the GHS Magic home in straight sets to wrap up the 2-0 sweep on Thursday night. The pesky Magic displayed a valiant effort throughout the entire playoffs and pushed the Stingrays until the final set in their championship series. The first set went to the newly-crowned champions 25-17. However, the real crowd-pleaser was in the following set which was a back and forth match. Both teams were tied at 24 on the scoreboard and were hungry for the win. The Magic then advanced to a 25-24 lead which the Stingrays matched. In set two’s final moments, the pennant winners displayed their prowess and bested the Magic 28-26.
#The team’s MVP award went to Pasha Johnson.
#Shantelle Rolle, head coach of the Stingrays, was elated to get the championship win this time around after being last year’s runners-up.
#“I am very excited especially for our girls I want to say thank for our big supporter our principal I want to thank you for backing and supporting us,
#“It feels great I thought about what happened last season we made it to the championships but we didn’t follow through I told my girls we always have room for improvement,” Rolle said.
#She credited the team’s focus, hustle, and on-court movement for the championship victory.
#The Lions’ junior girls successfully completed a 2-0 sweep against the Golden Eagles for a second consecutive championship win. In 39 minutes of action, they stopped their opponents 25-15 in set one and 25-18 in set two to begin their championship celebration.
#Patricia “Pattie” Johnson, head coach of the Lions, was happy that her team secured another junior girls GSSSA volleyball title.
#“The girls worked pretty hard and that is how they got the win. We had to go back and revisit our serves and had to get our bumps together because LW Young is a very good bumping team. As long as we kept the ball moving I knew one of us was going to get tired,” Johnson said.
#The MVP honours were awarded to Emily Rolle.
#The Golden Eagles’ junior boys will live to fight another day after they tied the series 1-1 against the Timberwolves. They emerged victorious (27-25) in a tough opening set. The junior boys team then comfortably defeated the Timberwolves 25-13 in set two to remain in contention for the title.
#Rashad Brice, head coach of the Golden Eagles, said they played a better game on Thursday compared to the previous night and had a strong message for their opponents ahead of today’s match.
#“We are gonna be ready. We are taking the chip home to the Eagles nest,” the coach said.
#The final series of the GSSSA volleyball championships will be played at 4pm today at the same venue.