The Algonquin Wolves men’s volleyball team played the Durham Lords in a tight game at the Jack Doyle Athletics and Recreation Centre on Jan. 26, emerging with a 3-2 victory.
The Wolves had a slow start to the first set but kept the score tight. The Wolves fought to catch up but ended up losing 25-21.
Durham tried to take the lead, but the Wolves pushed back with a 5-5 start to the second set. The Wolves seemed low on energy in the second set and it showed in the score with a 25-19 loss.
“It’s clear that the beginning did not go the way we wanted but I’m really proud of the team,” said head coach Jelle Kooijman
The team’s burning desire to win finally emerged in the third set. The energy in the crowd fired up the team and the Wolves pushed against Durham until a few kills from outside hitter Gavin Hassell and outside Jeff Commerford stole the show and ended the set with a 28-26 win.
Going into the fourth set, the team kept Durham in check up to a 14-14 tie.
Once the Wolves took hold of the serve again, they came through with a couple of great kills by middle Pres Jeyapalasingham. The Wolves claimed another set win with a score of 25-21.
“I think we need to start stronger in general, but we fought back hard so I commend the team for that,” said Hassell. “We want to get first in this division so yeah, we are really trying to fight for it.”
The Wolves delivered their final blows on Durham and closed the match with a 15-9 win in the fifth set, giving them the 3-2 victory for the match.
The Wolves were led in kills by Commerford, Jeyapalasingham, and outside Liam Arnold-Paquette. However, it was teamwork that led them to victory.
“Everyone coming off the bench really played an important role today. It’s a tough job to have a very specific task coming in, and you’re not playing the full game. I was really impressed with everyone that was coming off the bench, they did a really good job and [Hassell] was the example of that,” Kooijman said.
Hassell was selected player of the game after the team discussed their performance and planned to, in Hassell’s words, “rest, recover, get back at it again.”
The team is getting ready for two away games coming up at Georgian on Feb. 2 and at Seneca on Feb. 3.