Posted On: 02/15/20 6:20 PM
In 18 Elite the margin of error is minuscule. The difference between winning or losing – and not just winning or losing, but getting wiped off the court by teams who match up very close with each other.
For AVC Cleveland and MN Select, their backs were against the wall in 18 Elite Power Pool play after going 0-2 to start the morning. Both of these programs are accustomed to first day dominance at big-time tournaments.AVC Celebrating a Lourdes Myers kill.
Club Director and 18 AVC Coach and Director Meredith Gromala said, “When you have high standards and expectations it’s easy to get down when things don’t go your way. We weren’t very tough this morning, but once you start making those tough plays you remember who you are and get some confidence back.”
AVC was looking at an 0-3 day with MN Select taking set one, convincingly, following up in set two competing, but still facing match point in favor of Select. A gritty few points and a string of two late sent the two into a set three.
MN Select once again looked like they would be shutting the door going up 5-1 before an AVC timeout and up 8-2 at the side change. Select has an extremely balanced lineup with the likes of Jordan Stalpes heading to Omaha and one of the top swings in Minnesota with lefty right sides in Elizabeth Helmich going to James Madison.
AVC brought a healthy dose of a middle attack with Purdue commit, Lourdes Myers and Sabrina Malcom who will head to William & Mary, fighting back to 11-10 and eventually making the complete comeback winning.
“They followed a game plan and committed to the execution of it. We made plays like we normally do and we were able to build from there.”
AVC and MN Select will both have crossover matches with teams from the challenge pools with AVC facing TPV 18 Paragon and Select facing AZ EVJ 18N1-Tempe.
However, at Triple Crown and 18 Elite level play there is no match that is a given.
“At this level, you can let a bad set become a bad day. The level of competition is collegiate and you have to be able to pull yourself out and that’s what we struggled with this morning.”
Triple Crown has brought in the top clubs across the country which provides and atmosphere much like a national tournament.
“You are basically playing a national tournament in February. In our preparation we haven’t had college coaches watching, we haven’t had the caliber of power pools at this level. It’s a wake up call and the teams that wake up faster will be the ones who prevail.”