Day 1 Match #2
Ramblers Gun Down Tyrants in 3 Sets
Ramblers started the 2021 season with two new players in their starting line up, OH Brandon Rattray and setter Michael Keegan. Rattray played in Spain and led the league in kills and kills per set. It didn’t take long for Keegan and Rattray to connect. Keegan was not shy about feeding Rattray right off the bat. And Rattray responded with kill after kill. Rattray’s play also pumped up his teammates and raised the level of their game.
While the Tyrants gave their best effort with solid play from outside hitter Gianluca Grasso, who led the team with 7 kills and 2 block points and opposite Tim Johnson with 5 kills, Ramblers played almost flawless volleyball. They played like a well-oiled 7-cylinder engine. Everyone played a solid game on offense and defense. A play by libero Ryan Manoogian epitomized the Ramblers’ tenacious defensive performance. After a Rambler teammate ricocheted a ball off his shoulder, Manoogain reached out with one hand that set Ryan Mather for the kill.
As the match went on Keegan shared the wealth on offense with Aguillard, Duarte, Ryan Schickling and Mather. The Ramblers’ middles Josh Duarte and Antwain Aguillard played a solid game at the net collecting touches to help their defense dig balls. Duarte reeled off his own highlight film in the beginning of the third set. He chickened wing a ball to help his teammates earn a point. Then followed up with a block and a kill.
Although the Tyrants played good defense they just didn’t have the same fire power as the Ramblers whose hitting percentage was 57% versus the Tyrants’ 33%. Rattray led all players with 17 kills and added 2 blocks. The final scores were 25-18, 25-18 and 25-16.
Day 2 Match #1
Ramblers Manage Win Against Southern Exposure With Line Up Change and Deep Bench
After the Ramblers near flawless play on Friday, they made some major changes to their starting line up against Southern Exposure. Steve Duhoux replaced Michael Keegan at setter, Max Osmundson for Ryan Schickling, Kyle Radecki for Ryan Mather and Mark Lane for Josh Duarte. Southern Exposure made no changes.
Both teams sided out well to start the match. Most of Southern Exposures’ points came from Tyler Neil-Hubbard, who also had a block. Ramblers’ Kyle Radecki supplied the points for Ramblers, who took the early lead at 8-7. At 11-11 Southern Exposure started a mini-run that began with back-to-back kills by Jakub Ciesla took a three point lead at 19-16. But the Ramblers’ depth on the bench played a big part in launching a comeback. Ramblers substituted Mather for Radecki and Keegan for Duhoux. Ramblers took back the lead from a combination of Southern Exposure hitting errors and kills by Mathers and Brandon Rattray to 21-20. Ramblers closed the set with a Rattray kill, MB Mark Lane and Keegan block pulled for the win at 26-24.
In set two Southern Exposure took an early four point lead from Ramblers’ hitting errors and a kill and two blocks by Langston Payne to 10-6. Despite Rattery’s three consecutive kills Southern Exposure kept their lead with kills by Ciesla, Tyler Neil-Hubbard and block by Tim Lourich. Southern Exposure hung on to their lead with strong play by Lourich who had a block and kill, kill by Payne and block by Hubbard to close the set at 25-19.
Ramblers kept Mather and Keegan in the lineup for the third set, which paid off for them because they took an early four point lead with kills by Mather, Rattray, Lane and ace by Keegan. A run of errors kept Southern Exposure from launching a comeback and Ramblers increased their lead with a run of kills by Rattray, Lane, Mather and Max Osmundson to 20-11. Southern Exposure attempted a rally with a short run from kills by Payne, Hubbard ace and Lourich block and Lev Girshfeld kill to 22-17 but Ramblers sided-out well and closed the set with a Mather kill to 25-17.
In set four Southern Exposure started off strong with a kill and ace by Lourich. Ramblers countered with kills by Antwain Agulliard, Rattray, Mather and block by Lane. Ramblers errors helped Southern Exposure take an early lead at 8-7. While Payne and Ciesla provided kills for Southern Exposure, Mather contributed 6 kills and Rattray 2 kills to take a 17-14 lead. A small run of Southern Exposure errors combined with Rattray, Mather and Aguillard kills increased the Ramblers’ lead to 24-17. A transition attack by Rattray won the match for the Ramblers at 25-17.
Rattray and Mather led all players with 20 kills and 14 kills respectively. Ramblers had a total of nine blocks from Mather (4) Rattray and Osmundson (2) and Radecki 1. Ramblers’ hit 46%.
Ciesla led Southern Exposure with 13 kills, Payne 8 and Girshfeld 7 and totaled 8 blocks from Hubbard (3), Girshfeld (2) and Lourich, Ciesla and Payne (1). Southern Exposure’s hit 37%.
Day 3 Match #4
Ramblers Defeat Untouchables In Most Competitive Match of Weekend With Three Overtime Wins
Plenty of good action in this match, in which both teams did well to keep their hitting and service errors to a minimum. The Untouchables scored points on kills from Nick Ramos, Will Ragland and middle blocker Paul Bilanzic; and Ragland also added a service ace. Ramblers’ Setter Tanner Maxwell wasted no time going to his big guns Brandon Rattray and Ryan Mather for their first kills. Mather also contributed a block and Antonio Boucher added a kill that gave the Ramblers an 8-6 lead before the first media timeout. Maxwell continued to feed Rattray and Mather for kills and also middle blocker Mark Lane for one kill; and Mather added another block. But Untouchables managed to take a two-point lead with kills from Elvis Minyakov, two kills by Bilanzic and one kill by Ramos before the second media time out 16-14. After the timeout the Ramblers’ launched a comeback with a middle blocker kill and block by Josh Duarte, four kills by Rattray and one by Mather to take a 22-19 lead. During this run Untouchables committed several hitting and service errors but rallied back with a Ragland ace, Ramos and Bilanzic kills and tied the Ramblers at 24-24. Both teams sided-out well to 28-27 and then the Ramblers won the set on an Untouchables’ hitting 29-27.
In set two Untouchables struggled to pass the ball. It resulted in returning free and down balls and hitting errors. Ramblers scored points on two kills by Rattray, one by Mather and Lane and Mather block to take a six point lead at 8-2. Although the Untouchables cleaned up their play and scored points on kills by Buffum, Minyakov and three Ramos kills, Ramblers increased their lead with three kills by Rattray and one by Boucher to 16-8. Untouchables slowly rallied back with the help of a couple of Ramblers’ hitting errors and kills by Ramos and Buffum, three blocks by Bilanzic and one block by Buffum to cut the lead to two points at 21-19. Inconsistent play by the Ramblers and another Billanzic block and kill, and Ragland block tied the set 24-24. After Rattray scored a kill Ramblers took a one point lead at 27-26, the Untouchables committed a hitting error that won the set for Ramblers 28-26.
Like the first set Ramblers took an early 8-6 lead on three consecutive kills by Rattray, kill and block by Mather and kill from Duarte. Untouchables scored on kills by Ramos, Bilanzic and dump by setter Maxwell. After the first media timeout Untouchables’ errors and only one kill by Bilanzic helped the Ramblers add to their lead with a kill and block by Rattray, and kill by Mather and Duarte 12-8. The Untouchables gradually cut the lead and tied the score after Ramblers’ errors and Ragland service ace 16-16. Then Untouchables took the lead on a Bilanzic block to 17-16. Ramblers’ called a timeout. A Bilanzic kill gave Untouchables an 18-16 lead. Ramblers substituted Mather with Kyle Radecki and Maxwell with setter Steven Duhoux. After an Untouchables net violation and hitting error, the Ramblers tied the set with a Radecki block to 20-20. Ramblers took the lead on Untouchables’ hitting error 21-20. After Untouchables called a timeout, a Ragland kill and Bilanzic block gave Untouchables back the lead 22-21. Ramblers regain the lead with a kill from Rattray and Untouchables’ hitting error 23-22. At 24-23 Ramblers substitute Mather for Radecki and Maxwell for Duhox. Both teams exchanged points to a 26-26 tie. After an Untouchables’ overpass, Boucher scored a left-handed kill to 27-26 and a Mather’s ace won the match for the Ramblers 28-26.
Ramos led the Untouchables with 13 kills, Bilanzic 7 and Minyakov 5. Untouchables had 10 blocks and hit 34%. For the Ramblers Rattray led all players with 25 kills, Mather 9, Boucher 6, Duarte 5 and Lane 4. Ramblers also had 10 blocks and hit 46%. Untouchables finished with an 0-3 record and Ramblers 3-0.