EABH Volleyball Festival (03-04)
In preparation for the second season of ISSL this school year, EABH hosted the EABH Volleyball Festival where the Hawks played local and out of state teams. Local teams consisted of Mackenzie, Magnum, and Olympico meanwhile the ISSL competitors, the Lancer’s of Our Lady of Mercy, drove in from Rio de Janeiro. With an audience of family and friends of each local competing team, the games were full of energy: cheering and clapping.
The first game began at 4 pm on Friday March 3rd between the boys of OLM and EABH. Winning 2-0, the Hawks pridefully got off on the right foot, with amazing performance according to the cheerful audience and driven athletes. Their victory in the first set guaranteed one in the second with that spirit they had cultivated. Unfortunately, the Lady Hawks lost the following game against the Lancers 0-2 but without low spirits since the athletes were said to have amazing performance for their first game. A 3 victory streak for the boys was established when they won their games against Olympico and Magnum. The athletes said they believe that they’re ready for ISSL with their defeat against Magnum’s team chemistry. The day was short but fulfilling for the boys team, and the girls were given time to regenerate their energy and spirit, which most definitely allowed them to make an amazing comeback the next day.
Saturday games started early in the morning at 9 am and passed the expected end time of 2:45 pm, by 2 hours as the games were constantly extending an extra set. The Lady Hawks started the day off in the lead in the first set against Mackenzie. Winning the first set, the girls confidently went into the second set to soon after face a loss, tying the game at 1-1. As a rule in volleyball, there was a third set of 15 points rather than 25 to break the tie and the girls climbed up, keeping the game tied for most of it. It ended with 2-1 for the Lady Hawks, lifting their spirits with a great comeback from their game yesterday. The girls left the court proud of their performance against the advantaged team that consisted of tall players with history of experience. Julia Barros (4) received lots of praise for her remarkable performance during the game, with many observers noting it, with Marcela Borlido (5).
Soon after, our boys played OLM once again. Explicitly in this game, the team did an amazing job with blocks, bounces and receives, ending the second set emotionally with a final point by Lucas Chen (12), bringing hope for another victory. The third set tied 5 points before EABH finished the game with a victory: 2-1. It was the Lady Hawks’ turn to play the Lancer’s where they won the first set with a difference of 16 points. The second got taken over by the opposing team who were noticeably focusing on their plays according to spectators who were analyzing the game. Following the Lady Hawks’ loss in the second set, the third set came back with three consecutive points made by EABH. Annie Santos (2) made various critical points for winning the game with her beautifully formed spikes. The Lancers and Hawks’ boys played once again, but with a game that was allegedly, cheated. Hawks continuously flipped the game when losing to OLM by a few points. The boys were determined with Tiago Loures (5) endlessly setting and blocking the balls and constant dives by the entire court. The first set was lost when there was a failed serve. Once again, EABH rose again and won the second set with almost triple the amount of points the Lancer’s had. Although the victory excited the team, the third set had a pattern of continuous tying that was broken once the Lancer’s made 3 consecutive points leading to a match point. The most crucial play landed in a controversial place between inside and outside the court. The referee counted the ball to be inside the Hawks’ side, but was allegedly cheated which brought the morale of the team down a little. It is unsure whether the team would have been able to win if the point had been counted as out and not in, but according to Aidan Van Cleef (8) the team’s morale could have been better if it weren’t for the lack of trust in the referees.
To bring the games to an end, the Lady Hawk’s played Mackenzie one last time with another comeback after losing the first set. The third set extension was led with a super tight game of constant tying and switching of the teams in the lead which eventually lead in a victory for Mackenzie.
Feeling fulfilled and tired, the Volleyball Festival successfully awakened the ISSL spirit, motivating athletes to train extra hard and maintain their stamina. Being hosted by EABH, National Honor Society, Daily Hawk, Student Council and others, sold foods and beverages such as pizza, “geladinhos”, sandwiches, soda, gatorade and water for fundraising. Every athlete stopped by a few times to regenerate their energy between games. The event as a whole felt tiring and long but extremely rewarding for all participants: from the vendors, to the athletes and even the staff.