Bermuda’s Junior National Team 2 defeated the JNT1 in the semi-finals of the International Battle of the Boys Belligerents Volleyball Tournament in Atlanta on the weekend on their way to placing first in the silver pool.
JNT2 survived a close final to win two games to one, after losing the first game 25-20 before turning it around in the second game. Down 19-23, the Bermuda youngsters fought back to win 27-25 to send the match into a deciding game, played to 15. JNT2 kept the momentum going and dominated, winning the final 15-9 to take the title.
Bermuda sent two teams to the tournament where they came up against some of the top players from the south as a total of 16 teams competed. Day one saw the round robin to place the teams into two divisions, Gold and Silver. The top eight teams moved into the Gold division while the other teams battled it out in the Silver bracket.
Bermuda JNT1 contained captains Tristan Mullin and Kaleb Hamilton along with Tyler Hurdle, Conor Sinclair, Connor Somerville, Dimitri Guiglielmucchi and Riley Rego. JNT2 had captains Brady Cordeiro and Jack Brown as well as Nick Siese, Ben Barnett, Dylan Somerville, Steven Camara and Elijah Toavs.
Both teams fell short in their games by a narrow margin and were placed boys fell short in their games by a narrow defeat and were placed in the Silver Division. Day two saw them begin group play with JNT1 beating Team Triangle in two straight games, while JNT2 played CUCV Onslaught, also winning in two straight games.
The ultimate test came when the two Bermuda teams faced each other in the semi-finals to decide who would advance to the final. Strong offence by JNT2 and weak serves as well as errors by JNT1 enabled JNT2 to defeat their team-mates in two straight games and qualify for the final.
“Congratulations should be given to all players who stepped up amazingly against teams that compete on average at least once a month in tournaments,” said official Elisabeth Rae.
“This was the first tournament these boys have been to in the past year. Many thanks to coach Mark Hamilton and assistant coach Denise Correia who have worked so hard to make this programme a success.”