1st Set, started with Stefanie, Nicol, Gunnie, Chris, Matt and Ian and got off to a really slow start. Weak attacks, sloppy defensive play and general all round lethargy allowed Moray to build up a four point lead very early on. Took Adrian on for Ian at four with the score at 11-6 for Moray, but it didn’t make a lot of difference. Took a time-out at 15-6 down, but Moray continued to be more composed and built lead up to 19-8 before we started to stabilise things. Did manage to pull it back to 24-22, but Moray held on to take set 25 – 22.
Second set I left Adrian on for Ian, and put myself on for Stefanie. Initially didn’t look too good with Moray going 2-1 up, but we managed to get the side out, then Gunnie came to serve and the rest of the team got their act together. By the time Moray won a side out back, we were 16-2 up and never looked back in the set. Won comfortably 25-10.
Kept the same six on for the third set and it was much more even. We managed to get a couple of points in front fairly early on and maintained that until near the end of the set when we got another run of serves to take the set 25-15.
On the grounds that if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, stuck with Me and Nicol, Chris & Gunnie, Matt & Adrian for the fourth set and we did get to 12-6 in front, but then a bit of sloppiness allowed Moray back in, and they chipped away at the lead, eventually overtaking us and getting the set 25-22.
15 minutes left to play the final set, and both sides struggling with a very warm hall, but we made the better start, going 4-0 up, and turning round at 8-2 up. Result was never really in doubt after that and we won the set 15-7 for a 3-2 win
With a starting line-up of Norrie & Nicol setting, Gunny & Chris through the middle and Matt & Ian as outside hitters, Inverness on paper looked a strong team. However we don’t play on paper as it was Forres who started the better team quickly gaining an early lead. Despite hitting well, basic errors in defence allowed Forres to keep the lead for the first 3 serving rotations. At the score 8-3 to Forres, Inverness woke up and started to take control of the set. Consistent serving and varied attacks soon saw the score at the next side-out ascend to 8-11 in Inverness’ favour. For the remainder of the set Inverness continued to dominate and were taking 3-4 points on their service to Forres’ one and took the set 17-25.
Wence came on for Ian and Inverness continued in the same vein with powerful and varied attacks and soon had a commanding lead. Mid set, Forres came back into it by using the tip and soft smash to particular good effect to find gaps in the Inverness defence. Although Inverness were always in the lead, Forres narrowed the gap to 14-15. At this point, Inverness upped their game and utilised their strong middle attack to the full and again edged clear of their opponents. With the score at 20-19, Inverness again continued to score regularly on their service and soon took the set 20-25.
Dave returned to the same line up as the 1st set. Once again Inverness started slowly and the exchanges were even for the first couple of side outs with neither team gaining any sore advantage. However after the 4th service rotation, inverness soon took a commanding 7-15 lead which they were never to lose and comfortably took the set 16-20.
Dave came on to set in the 4th with Nicol making way and again Wence came on for Ian. Inverness served to start and quickly had an early lead due to strong and varied serves which cause Forres some early problems. In similar fashion to the earlier sets, Inverness were scoring 3-4 points more than Forres on each service rotation. Consequently Inverness soon had a commanding lead, but once again complacency showed its ugly head and Forres who were playing for pride demonstrated that if given the chance their controlled and determined style of volleyball could be highly effective. They quickly brought the score back to 14-15. With this wakeup call and Dave’s constructive criticism, Inverness soon upped their game and utilising some attack options recently practiced from the previous training session and soon the lead was restored and inverness went on to comfortably take the set 25-20.
For the 5th and final set, Nicol cam on for Norrie and again Wence made way for Ian. Inverness dominated this set throughout and were 4-8 up at the change of ends. Again powerful attacks through both the middle and outside were too much for the gallant Forres defence and Inverness took the set 8-15 and the match 0-5.
for pics see photo album page.
The 1st set started with Norrie & Stephanie as setters, Gunny & Chris through the middle and Ian & Matt through the outside. Inverness had the serve and started strongly quickly getting early points for a commanding lead. Despite a dip in form allowing Forres to come back into the set @ 13-12, Inverness were always in the lead and soon started to again dominate especially in the front court and soon the set was won 25-15.
Dave opted to change things around for the 2nd set with Nicol coming on for Stephanie, Adrian on for Chris and Lucas on for Ian. Although half the team was changed, the strength in depth of the squad was evident as Inverness dominated the set winning it quite comfortable 25-11.
Further changes in the 3rd set: Stephanie on for Norrie, Chris on for Gunny and Wence on for Matt. Forres probably realised that the match was beyond them but were playing for pride and consequently made the 3rd set much more competitive and were causing inverness severe problems with many forced errors occurring. With forres leading @ 15-18 Dave made his first mid set substitution of the season and brought on Gunny for Wence through the outside. This gave the setters a different attack option and steadied the defence resulting in Inverness overtaking Forres’ score and eventually taking the set 25-19 and the match 3-0.
Overall a convincing win in 3 straight sets.
As told by dave (Head coach)
We had a pretty strong line up – Stefanie, Nicol, Gunnie, Chris, Matt, Lucas, Wence, Ian and myself if necessary, while Kinloss had struggled to get a team together.. On paper should have been a fairly straightforward match for us, but of course we don’t play on paper.
First set though, was fairly simple. Ian and Wence were comfortable through four, while Gunnie and Chris got a good deal of success through the middle. Took the set reasonably easily, with no great drama.
Soooooo, thought it would be a good idea to do the usual trick of making sure everyone got court time by swapping Matt and Lucas in for Ian and Wence. Before you know it, we’re about 10 – 2 down in the set, with the two new guys not up to speed quickly enough, and the other four struggling to gel with them. However, they did turn it round, and eventually took the set (think it was 26 – 24, but I may be getting confused).
For the third set I put Ian and Wence back on, and it seemed to work as they built up a fairly good lead. Then it turned into the reverse of the second, with Kinloss staging a fightback and taking the set.
Wasn’t really worried about the result yet, so I put myself on for Nicol in the fourth, and Lucas and Matt back on as well. Took the fourth set Ok after a couple of wobbles to secure the points.
Ian and Wence back on for the fifth, with Nicol replacing Stefanie and although Kinloss got to 8 – 7, after the change of ends we pulled away and took the fifth set reasonably comfortably.
So 4 -1 the final result, and although I’m a bit disappointed about dropping a set, there were a lot of positives to take from the match, as well as a few things to work on the next time we train – notably back court coverage and reading the game….
We won 5-0. As told by Dave (Head coach)
First set was fairly close – put out a reasonably strong 6 (well as strong as it could be with this old git setting), but Buckie were by no means overwhelmed and managed to keep up with us for large chunks of the set.
Second set was much more one sided – think we got to 10-2 up (and the two points were service errors by us), then got a wee bit lazy and allowed them to get a few more points. Result was never really in doubt though.
After that the difficult part was keeping ourselves focussed and motivated – Buckie had a couple of guys who could hit reasonably well, but by the third set their percentages were way off, and they didn’t really trouble us.
Brought Adrian on in my place halfway through the fourth set (twisted awkwardly, so needed a rest….or was it old age?), and although it was obvious we hadn’t used Adrian there before, it worked reasonably well.
Fifth set just carried on from where fourth left off – we remained comfortable while Buckie started to look like they wanted home.
Inverness beat the reigning champions in a closely fought match last night. Despite losing the toss, IVC quickly took a commanding lead with some 5 serves in a row not being returned. This strong start was enough to maintain the lead which led to IVC winning the 1st set. With a few changes to personnel, IVC were slow out of the blocks and were quickly trailing 9-2. Despite finding their form this lead was unassailable resulting in Isla claiming the set 23-25. However IVC got their act together and dominated the next 2 sets and consequently the match winning eventually winning 3 sets to 1. As all sets must be played in the league, the 5th set provided an excellent opportunity for some changes to be made. Unfortunately, Isla with only pride to play for won the set 14-16. But it was IVC who left Hilton with the bragging rights and showed that this season they are up for the challenge of taking the title from Isla VC.