UNIVERSITY OF YORK MEN’S 1STS 0 – SHEFFIELD HALLAM UNIVERSITY 1STS 3
BUCS Men’s Northern Conference 1A, Wednesday 5 November 2008
A spirited fight-back from York was not enough to prevent a straight-sets defeat to a very powerful Sheffield Hallam side in the men’s volleyball today.
York found themselves up against an in-form Sheffield team whose clear height advantage gave them the edge throughout. But York put in a valiant display and the 3-0 scoreline didn’t do justice to what was, in truth, a very good contest.
After being overwhelmed in the first set, York ran Hallam very close in the second – eventually going down 25-22 – and continued the fight in the third.
“It was probably our best performance of the season,” said captain Jack Butcher. “Sheffield Hallam is one of the best teams in the league, if not the country, so I’m not too disheartened or surprised by the way things went today”
Like many York sides, the men’s volleyball team lost some of its more experienced players over the summer and is still integrating players and developing its style.
But with the team playing at the highest possible level of university sport in BUCS Northern Conference 1A, there is little room for error and Butcher was quick to recognise the urgency of the situation this term.
“It will take time to gel, and we are in the process of putting some new strategies together, but at the same time we put in a good performance today. We’ve got some easier ties coming up in the next couple of weeks, so we’ll be hoping to pick up some points there,” he said.
The third set saw York produce some of the volleyball upon which the team has built its reputation during the last few years. An infectious energy returned to their play and it looked for a short time that there may have been a way back into the match. But some stout defending from Sheffield carried them to a 25-20 victory to make it three-nothing in the best-of-five match.