Cambridge superior over Oxford at Volleyball Varsity
CHRISTIANA SMYRILLI sees the Varsity Volleyball matches go Cambridge’s way – and Oxford lose their cool again.
Having played away last year, the Light Blues could enjoy home support this year. A huge crowd of friends and loved ones cheered for them, as well as a DJ and the Cambridge Cougars cheerleading squad.
The event started with the two second teams (UCC Women and UCC Men) playing on adjacent courts against the Dark Blues second teams. UCCW played well and with passion, wanting to take revenge for last year’s defeat. The ladies fought hard for every point, and in the end managed to win 3-1 in sets. UCCM were winning 2-0, but unfortunately in the end let Oxford believe in the victory and win the game 3-2.
After a small presentation from the Cougars, the Light Blues women came on court. Cheered by the crowd, encouraging them to repeat the victory of the two previous years, and having already won against Oxford at BUCS, the women were high spirited and excited for the forthcoming game. The first set was won easily (25-9).
Entering the second set, Oxford tried to be stronger, but the Light Blues were again the ones to win the set, albeit with a tighter score (25-17). Oxford had nothing to lose anymore and came into the third set feeling very determined. Cambridge led by seven points, but Oxford still managed to find a way to come back, taking advantage of some mistakes by the Cambridge players.
With the score at 2-1, the fourth set was critical. If Cambridge won it, the game would be over, but if Oxford won, the psychology of the game would completely change. Both teams played hard for the set, with long points, strong hits and spectacular defence. The last few points were especially tense, as the score was 24-24. However, it was the Cambridge ladies who had the nerve to finish the set and thus win the Varsity encounter for the third year in a row.
The men followed the women onto the court, wanting to bring a double victory to Cambridge and repeat last year’s triumph (which was the first double victory for 12 years). Coach Christian lined up the men he thought best suited this task. Indeed, the men seemed to be doing a great job in defending and hitting hard against Oxford, who seemed unable to resist in any way. Bad behaviour also forced the referee to give a red card to an Oxford player. The men finished the game tidily and easy, winning 3-0 and giving huge joy to all the fans.
With thanks to CUVC for the photos.