The game ended 2-3 in favor of VPB, but our Gladiators gave an excellent performance as a proof of the important improvements that there have been so far and in such a short time.
JCU immediately started off strong and set a high pace, skilfully controlling the game both in technical and tactical way. The opponents were able to respond quite well to JCU attacks, but the first set ended 26-24 for our Gladiators.
In the second set, VPB wanted to try to dominate the game, and they promptly gained a 6-point advantage over JCU. However, our Gladiators’ determination and teamwork prevailed, and JCU brought home another win in the second set, 26-24.
“I am really happy with how the team played the first two sets, especially because I lined up different players in the two sets,” coach Stefano Papari pointed out. “This means that all of the players are growing, and they showed that they can all played extremely well and win.”
The third set, however, saw an overturning of the game. Thanks to their expertise, the opponents were able to turn the game in their favor, and they won the third set, 19-25.
“In this set, I tried to line up an all-female team despite this is a coed tournament because I needed to see how the team that is going to Athens in March for the ACG International Sports Festival would play,” coach Stefano added. “We lost because, of course, the two teams were quite unbalanced, but our girls played really well, and I think that they can do really good in Athens.”
Due to our Gladiators’ tiredness, the last two sets were kind of one-way game with VPB winning one set 16-25 and the other one 8-15.
“Despite we lost by a thread, I am quite satisfied with what I saw on the field tonight compared to last-week game,” coach Stefano continued. “Even though we did not have any practice between last game and tonight’s game, the team showed progress and took the field with more confidence and awareness.”
Congrats, Gladiators! Keep up with the good work!
MVP – Flaminia Giacomi