What a week in school volleyball we had!
Two major finals days, back to back in the city of Galway. On Wednesday over 300 spectators, players, coaches, VI staff, bus drivers and parents all descended on NUIG Kingfisher for the 2020, U16 National Finals.
The matches and event certainly lived up to the hype as the Girls A final got us underway. Holy Family SS A looking to continue their winning ways raced into a 16-3 lead in the first set. However, their Kildare rivals from Naas fought back with great spirit coming back to within 2 points of their Newbridge neighbours.
Holy Family served out the first and took the second to win 2-0. The Kildare school however didn’t quite have it all their own way on the day as Scoil Mhuire of Strokestown clinched the B title 2 sets to 1, against the Holy Family's division B team.
In the Girls C division, it was a nip and tuck game. Ardscoil Mhuire Ballinasloe raced into a one set lead however the Dublin school Grange CC came fighting back to take the next two sets and the match, 2-1.
As for the boys St Brigid’s College, Loughrea got back to winning titles this time at the expense of Patrician Presentation in the Boys B final 2-0. As did Drumshanbo VS who overcame Elphin CC on a similar score line 2-0.
Congratulations to all coaches, players and schools for a remarkable year and making it all the way to the National Finals.
Boys A – Drumshanbo VS 2-0 Elphin CC
Boys B – St Brigid’s College 2-0 Patrician Presentation
Girls A – Holy Family SS 2-0 St Mary’s College
Girls B – Scoil Mhuire 2-1 Holy Family SS
Girls C – Grange CC 2-1 Ardscoil Mhuire
We weren’t quite finished for the week yet as we had our biggest ever Post Primary Spikeball Finals the following day. This time it was all about the new 1st year players. We had 200+ competing on the final day. A total of 102 matches on the day would determine this year’s champions.
The 34 schools progressed from their regional pools just before Christmas to set themselves up against the best of the best in the country. It was a phenomenal day of player skills and also refereeing from our older students who took complete control of games throughout the day. As the day moved on, the counties represented became less and less until we were left with only 4.
The boys final Sutton Park School of Dublin faced against Grennan College of Kilkenny. An incredibly tight game saw the Kilkenny side just clinch this year’s title. Over in the girls two different counties of Kerry and Laois. It was the Kingdom’s Mercy Mounthawk that took gold over Scoil Chriost Ri after an intense 2-1 win. Again, huge congrats to all schools for progressing to the final day.
What’s up next for school’s volleyball?
The focus shifts to one of the most anticipated events on the school calendar. January 30th in The National Indoor Arena, we have North VS South. Our Senior and U16 A Champions will face their northern counterparts in an exciting Champion of Champions day of volleyball. Representing our country is a fantastic four different schools showing the competitive nature of volleyball we have at this moment. Last year it was honours even as two trophies went back North. Let’s see how 2020 plays out. The best of luck to all players!
Senior Boys – St Flannan’s College, Ennis V Campbell College, Belfast
Senior Girls – Colaiste Mhuire, Ennis V Dalriada School, Ballymoney
U16 Boys Drumshanbo VS, Leitrim V Campbell College, Belfast
U16 Girls- Holy Family SS, Newbridge V Portadown College, Craigavon
We also have our much-coveted Schools Cup and junior volleyball first rounds currently underway. Stay tuned for the big updates as we progress towards the final straight of school volleyball for this season.
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