KITCHENER, ON: The Humber Hawks men's volleyball team improved to 12-1 on the season by way of a 3-2 (23-25, 25-23,19-25, 25-14, 15-7) win over the Conestoga Condors.
Humber had a rough start to their opening set. Making multiple serving errors within the first 15 points, the Hawks practically handed the Condors a five point lead. Head Coach Wayne Wilkins was forced to call a timeout as the Condors reached a steady lead of 13-8. Conestoga was able to maintain their five point lead all the way to 17-12. At this point, the Hawks had kicked it into high gear, lessening their deficit by three points and pushing the Condors to call a time out. As they re-entered the court, Humber continued to cut into the Condors lead. The Hawks soon took charge, grabbing an 18-17 feat, which enticed Conestoga to call their second time out. Coming out of this, both teams began to battle for the lead back and forth. A huge block by setter Jake Gomes and middle Andrew Blakey placed the score at an intense 22-22. The score continued to waiver back and forth, until the Condors buckled down and finished the set off at 25-23.
Set two mimicked the first, as the Hawks gave the Condors an early lead. This time though, the Hawks regained their footing before the Condors flew too far out of their reach. Tying the game up at 13-13, Humber began to take control of the game. As the Hawks led in points, Conestoga trailed closely behind. Rafael Hilario slammed two kills in a row out of the right side, placing Conestoga's defense at a stand still. Following this, Kamyn Wilkins hit the front court and nailed down two kills of his own. As the set got closer to game point, both teams remained within a point of each other. At 24-23, Conestoga's head coach ordered a time out in order to hopefully tie the Hawks at 24-24. This failed to prevail though, as the Hawks quickly nailed down a kill and took the second set 25-23.
The third set followed suit of the previous, as the Hawks failed to find their footing. This time though, the Hawks quickly sharpened their gameplay and matched the Condors score at 6-6. John Obi commanded respect in the middle as he nailed down a kill then went on to block the Condors offensive attempt. Almost instantly, the Hawks had seemly lost their energy, dropping four points and falling behind the Condors. This pushed coach Wayne Wilkins to call his first timeout of the set. Coming out of this break, the Hawks began to give away points due to unforced errors. These errors increased as the Hawks fell further and further behind. Another timeout was called by coach Wayne Wilkins, but the Hawks were unable to redeem themselves in points. The second set was lost 25-19.
Both teams came ready to perform in the fourth set, as they consistently traded the lead in points. Starting off early, lead scorers Rafael Hilario and Kamyn Wilkins nailed down multiple kills from both sides of the court, asserting their determination to take the game to a fifth set. Conestoga called a time out as the Hawks began to slip away from them at 8-5. This failed to stop the Hawks though, as they re-entered the court and extended their lead to 11-6. Rafael Hilario continued to display his volleyball IQ as he made his way around the block and slammed another two kills down. As the Hawks continued to roll in the points, Conestoga became engulfed in a nine point hole. Humber continued to display their flawless offensive play, as they quickly finished off the set 25-14.
The fifth set showcased the best of both teams gameplay. John Obi earned the Hawks their first point with a huge kill, quickly asserting his dominance in the middle. This was followed by Kamyn Wilkins earning two more kills of his own. Now four points ahead in the final set, the Hawks pushed Conestoga into a timeout. Coming out of this, the Hawks continued to fly higher than the Condors, extending to a 12-6 lead. The final points of the set were won by intense, minute long rallies which left the crowd on the edge of their seats. After buckling down and finding a way to finish each rally positively, the Hawks finished the game 15-7.
The Hawk's have a slow week ahead of them, but look to host Cambrian and Boreal during the weekend of January 26th.