NORCO 13 Black
The Norco 13 Black team qualified for the 2019 USAV National Championships at the RMR Zelinkoff tournament in May. It was an extremely stressful day but we somehow managed to come out in the first place position and earned the National Bid to Indianapolis. We practiced for six weeks and then flew to Indiana. This was the second year that our team attended Nationals. The year before, we went into Nationals totally unprepared. We spent this entire year working hard to mentally prepare for success on a national scale so that we could be competitive at Nationals.
We went into the first day of the tourney with a sense of confidence and a will to win. We found ourselves in a 6 team pool as the second seed. We beat Five1 13s from Michigan easily in two sets. It was a great first match for us to acclimate to the venue. Then we took on A5 13s out of Atlanta, GA. We struggled to pass in game one but came back full force in game two with an aggressive offense to extend the match into a third game, winning 15-6. Our team continued to gain confidence going into our final match of the day. Our third opponent was a good ball control team called Club Integrgrity 13s from Pennsylvania. Even though we were really high error, we managed to beat them in two sets. We went home that first night feeling pretty good about ourselves at 3-0 for the first day.
On Day 2, we had our work cut out for us. We played Oklahoma Charge who was extremely physical. Their outside hitters were big, strong and explosive. We had a lot of success digging their cross court attack and found ourselves in a position to win the match. It took us three sets but we came out as the victors winning 15-12. Our match against Oklahoma Charge 13s was our most important win of the entire tournament. During that match, something special happened to the girls They finally realized their potential! For our final match of pool play we took on TStreet 13s out of Southern California. This team was packed full of girls with heavy arm swings and super aggressive serving. We were never able to get into system and lost the match in 2 sets. We finished our pool in second place and we felt very confident in our ability to compete with the rest of the teams moving up towards the Gold Bracket.
On the third day of Nationals, we re-pooled into a 3 team pool with San Antonio Extreme 13s and Orlando Thunder Tampa 13s. We lost in 3 competitive sets to Orlando Thunder, but managed to beat San Antonio Extreme in 3 sets. We overcame them with our ability to transition some really great digs into our middle attack. We finished as the 2nd place team in our pool and continued to move towards the Gold Bracket. Our final match of Day 3 was against Arizona Epic 13s. The girls were determined to get to the Gold Bracket and they played their hearts out with solid defense and passing. It was a full team effort, and we won in 2 sets. The team shed tears of joy when the match was over, bursting with pride. We had officially made it into the Gold Bracket.
The fourth day of the tournament was full of jitters and absolute excitement for our opportunity to play in the Gold Bracket and possibly advance to the Final 4. Our opponent was North Kentucky Tsunami 13s. They were undefeated coming into our match. The match started out well, with an even score for most of the first set until the very end where we came up short with some hitting errors. Our hitters were trying to be really aggressive and take big swings. Game 2 started much like the first set. The score was tied all the way up to the 20-20 mark. The girls took big swings and served extremely aggressively but we lost set 2 21-25. Our season came to a screeching halt, but we have tremendous memories of a wonderful season. The Norco 13 Black represented Norco and the RMR to the best of their ability and can forever have a Gold Bracket finish on their athletic resumes.
#1 – Ella Noble #4 – Macy Mahoney #7 – Brooklynn Sullivan #10 – Abbie Harvey
#2 – Karsyn Fetzer #5 – Madeline Stucky #8 – Janelle Folks Head Coach – Jill Stucky
#3 – Danielle Burchett #6 – Julia Bohlinger #9 – Avery Pearson Asst. Coach – Audra Pearson
Colorado Juniors 13Mal qualified in the National Division by winning the RMR JNQ on May 5, 2019. They finished second in pool but defeated pool winner Rocky Select in the crossover match. Going to Indianapolis in the National Division was a great accomplishment, which proved to be a challenging experience for the young 13Mal team. In the first two days of competition, 13Mal was somewhat overwhelmed by the competition, winning only one set. Things changed on Day 3. Although they still did not win a set, they played significantly better than the first two days, scoring 19 and 23, 24 and 22, and 21 and 23 points in three matches. On Day 4, 13Mal won its first match of the tournament, defeating Volley FX 25-19, 13-25, and 15-7, setting up the last match of the tournament. 13Mal beat Cobb Atlanta in the first set, 25-16, lost to them 10-25 in the second set then lost a heart-breaker at 15-17. None of the girls on 13Mal had ever been to nationals, nor had any of them ever competed in the RMR JNQ. It was truly a magical season!!
Colorado Juniors 13 Tammy made Rocky Mountain Region history by qualifying in the 13Open division. Their third place finish at the Northeast Qualifier in Philadelphia made them the only RMR 13s team to earn an Open bid at a qualifier. At Nationals, the team fully expected to play elite competition. The team focused less on wins and losses and more on playing well against the best 13s teams in the country. After lots of third set battles and countless lessons learned, the girls finished 23rd in 13Open. We all left Indy with big smiles- knowing the girls competed with the best of the best!
Momentum 13 Vanessa
Momentum 13 Vanessa earned their bid to Nationals at the RMR Zelinkoff Tournament. The team spent the following weeks ramping up their competitive edge in practices. 13 Vanessa committed themselves to new goals leading up to Nationals to challenge and hold themselves accountable to growth and development. A wonderful team dinner and bonding activity on Sunday, left the girls united and motivated for Day 1 of the competition. Drawing the afternoon wave, allowed the team to sleep in a little longer and get acclimated to the humidity. The team spent the morning checking out the venue and looking at the Nationals specific merchandise. Seeded 6th in pool, 13 Vanessa had to play the number one and two seed in back to back matches. Though the team battled, they lost both matches. However, the team rallied in their final match and ended Day 1 with a 1-2 record. After spending the morning at Tilt Studios, playing laser tag and arcade games, 13 Vanessa was ready to compete, and their competitive drive translated to the court. The team battled for every point which resulted in a perfect 3-0 record to end Day 2. Even though it was a quick turnaround from the afternoon to morning wave, the team knew their 8 am match was a must win. The girls played as a cohesive unit and earned their win. After three days of pool play, 13 Vanessa had a 5-2 record and found themselves in a tie with EliteVBTC 12 Black, a talented team who would end up earning the silver medal in 13 American. Unfortunately, only the top three finishers would advance out of the pool and continue their pursuit of gold. Because 13 Vanessa lost to EliteVBTC 13 Black on the first day of competition, 13 Vanessa was out of medal contention due to the head-to-head tie breaker. The girls persevered through the disappointment and ended the tournament on an 8-game winning streak. This would not have been possible without the grit and determination of the team, unconditional cheering from the parents, and the support from the rest of the Momentum family. The team earned the title of Flight 1 champions and a final ranking of 25th out of a field of 64 teams. 13 Vanessa proudly represented the RMR and Momentum VBC at the 2019 GJNC. For many, this was their first Nationals experience and the team embraced every opportunity to make lifelong memories on and off the court with their teammates.