By Darryl G. Smart
When the Simcoe Sabres first came together for their first junior boys volleyball practice, Max Tulpin and Andrew Auld saw the potential. They all did. Little did they know that their goal of capturing the Athletic Association of Brant Haldimand Norfolk District 9 West title would lead them to a possible undefeated season.
So far, so good, as the Sabres walked away with the D9 West title thanks to a 3-0 (25-22, 25-21, 25-21) win over the Holy Trinity Titans at Delhi District Secondary School on Thursday.
“We all knew there was some work to be done, but it was a good team,” Tulpin recalled. “But once we got going the potential was there.”
He and Auld said the secret to the Sabres success, which now includes a 10-0 record in the regular season and playoffs, is good team chemistry and communication.
“Those are huge for volleyball and it’s something we have,” Tulpin said.
Another secret is the ability to shake almost anything off. And on Thursday that meant coming from behind to win the third and final game.
“That third game was a tough one,” Auld said. “We were down by eight and came back to win it. The game plan was all about getting momentum. And that’s what we did. We treated every point like it was 0-0. That’s what (Coach Greg) Mr. Pajor really tried to tell us today.”
Earning Norfolk bragging rights is something Auld, Tulpin and the rest of the Sabres are very happy about. But they were all business after the game.
“We know we have another game to play,” Tulpin said. “We want to keep that undefeated season.”
Next up is the AABHN D9 final. The Sabres will take on the Hagersville Hurricanes, who defeated the Waterford Wolves 3-2 (25-16, 23-25, 25-10, 15-25, 15-13) last week. That game takes place 3pm Tuesday at Dunnville Secondary School.
“We just want to keep focusing on the next point,” Auld said. “We know it’ll be a good game.”