In emphatic fashion and just about from the opening serve, Leeds Met Carnegie demonstrated why they top BUCS Northern Conference 2B with a display of sheer dominance against the University of York volleyball first team today.
Given their relative inexperience, it was a very decent showing from the home team despite losing 25-9, 25-10 and 25-3 in the a three-set whitewash. Their opponents were simply better in every facet of their game and after the match York were quick to recognise this.
“They have clearly played a lot before and one of their players supposedly plays at national level, so I think we actually did quite well, considering,” said York captain Lisa Breitschuh. “The first and second sets were really quite enjoyable although I felt we lacked some dynamism in our play. By the third set we’d kind of given up hope, though, and that was a little more disappointing.”
Despite the defeat, the women’s volleyball team have made huge strides this term. The team lost most of last years starting players in the summer and so has had to rebuild almost entirely from scratch in a difficult BUCS league.
“We’ve made massive improvement as individuals and as a team as the games have gone on. Even though we lost today, if you compare the performance to our first match (against Bradford firsts) then there is such a noticeable improvement, especially in skill levels.” The only criticism Breitschuh had for her team was what she felt was a lack of “drive” in their play; a missing on-court attitude to go along with ever-improving technique.
Today’s result leaves the girls still rooted to the bottom of the league, but within easy reach of mid-table safety with both Sheffield Hallam and Bradford level with York on three points at the start of play.
“We are really building for next year, considering how much the team has changed since the summer,” said a philosophical Bretschuh. “There will be five of us staying on – a very good sign – and hopefully some more to add to that.”
Aside from the captain, the team was pleased with the overall performance and the manor of play against such tough opposition. A rugged, if short-lived fightback in the second set the highlight. “They were a seriously good side, so we were happy at the end,” said second-year Outside Lucy Porter. “Some of the things that we’ve been working hard on in practise came together on the court today, so that is really pleasing.”