Serving up a treat
Both of Leeds’ men and women’s teams fought hard to climb ranks at this years’ Christie Cup Championships held in Liverpool
The women’s team came second while the men’s placed third.
Both teams played with rigour and a fierce desire to win. This was especially true for the women, facing a tough Liverpool: their main competitor.
The last women’s game played against Liverpool in BUCS competition resulted in close defeat, which further fuelled their motivation.
Great plays were made by both teams in a tight contest; Liverpool won one set by a mere two points. Leeds quickly responded though, taking the next set by three points.
In the third and final set however, the Leeds team’s spirit fell as they crumbled under pressure.
Mistakes were made and Leeds found it impossible to return powerful serves and deep spikes in the backcourt due to gaps in the coverage.
Despite the defeat, the women’s team rallied round to beat Manchester convincingly 15-8 and 15-3.
Leeds won points by placing easy balls in the gaps on Manchester’s court and also improved their service-reception in comparison to the Liverpool game.
Outside hitter Sandra Werber scored some powerful hits during both matches, while middle player Claire Denman made some impressive blocks.
The men’s team, despite displaying passion and intensity, were narrowly beaten in both matches.
Against Liverpool, they went a set down but won the second, each decided by four points.
However, Liverpool surfaced as the winners in the last set, after an intense rally of plays and spikes, by just three points.
In the men’s game versus Manchester, there were some memorable plays and incredible saves, which made the game very exciting to watch.
Outside player Jonathan Lee and Libero, Roberto Risio, made some remarkable pick-ups and body dives.
There were also impressive spikes and serves by Baagi Onneetsee and Lucas Hsu.
Unfortunately, simple miscommunication, blocks that went out, missed serves, and difficult spikes resulted in Leeds’ demise.
Although the men’s team lost by six points in the first set, they had a promising comeback in the second set, but still lost narrowly by two points.
Women’s team captain, Claire Denman, commented: “This was my last game with the University of Leeds women’s team and to finish on a decisive victory like this, when you put so much passion into the sport, is pretty amazing.”