One Last Time
By: Casey McCue
As my time winds down with Campus Rec, so does my time with intramural volleyball. This is my last shot with my team to bring home the title. Within my past two years, we have come close, but could never pull out the big win. This year we entered the playoffs undefeated, which boosted our confidence a bit. Unfortunately for us, we won the first round of playoffs on a default due to the other team not showing up. This led us into the tough late night game for the second round of playoffs.
The first match of the game we were beyond rusty. With little communication and team chemistry we quickly fell behind 0-1. Something had to change. We regrouped, switched our rotation a bit and hoped for the best in the second set. Volley after volley, this one came down to the last few points. Our competitiveness kicked in when we all realized this could be it. With the score being neck and neck. We had to pull out this set. Out of nowhere we found this rhythm. Bump, set, spike. We were starting to rack up the points. This was our team; the team that killed it through the regular season. After winning that second set, it was 1-1 and the final set came down to the time with five minutes left. We continued the groove from the second match into the third with a decent lead the entire game to pull out an easy win in the third set.
Following that big win, we knew quarterfinals was not going to be a breeze, but this time we had a better mindset going into the game. This game we had a decent rotation in motion, and everyone came to play with their “A” game. This game was even more intense than the last, volleying back and forth the entire game. We had some incredible plays between our digs and blocks, some of which I didn’t think we could have possibly returned. One of my teammates had an amazing save with her foot that kept us alive. The other team was able to creep ahead to win the first set, which just fueled our fire for the second one. Our biggest downfall in this game was not being able to set up our front row as much, so some of our plays were easily returned. Even with the high pressure of the second game, we were able to anticipate their spikes better which helped us pull out that tight win. It was now tied 1-1. This one was played up to 15. They started with their best server, which we struggled to get back over the net. Once we got on the score board we were able to get into position to set up our front row to spike the ball which gave us hope for a comeback. Unfortunately, once we got the ball rolling it was too late for us. It was over. We had lost the last set 15-11. Our season was suddenly over.
Losing the last game hadn’t hit as hard as losing the last game in the other seasons. I think it’s because we went out swinging. It was a real tight game, which I cannot say for the past two years. For a group of mostly amateurs playing against experienced opponents, we killed it. That final game was our best one yet. The amount of fun we had playing the game especially in that last one, beat winning any title. That was it, my last game ever, and I was quite okay with the results.