Pirates keeping their focus on national championship

Matheus Teles, Reporter

The men’s volleyball has arrived at the midpoint of the season.  The Pirates, ranked fifth nationally, have been on a streak with four straight wins in their last four games: Ottawa University (3-0), Missouri Valley College (3-0), Cardinal Stritch University (3-0) and Hope International University (3-0). However, it comes after a disappointing loss to top-ranked Missouri Baptist University on March 6.

This is the second loss to the AMC rival Spartans this season. However, this time the Pirates kept the game closer at 3-2.

The Pirates stand at 14-3 on the season with a 5-3 conference record.

Coming from three straight wins, the Pirates knew the game against the Spartans would be very difficult. When they first met this season, the no.1 team in the nation took the win by 3-1. Knowing this, Park students crowded Breckon Sports Center and supported the team until the end of the game.

The Spartans started the game better than the Pirates and were more efficient in the attacks. With 17 kills, the away team was able to win the first set by 25-22. During the break between sets, Mike Talamantes, Park men’s volleyball coach, talked with his players and was able to adjust the team for the rest of the game.

With support from the stands, Park won the second set and third set by 25-22 and 25-18, respectively.

In the fourth set, the Spartans came with an aggressive approach and had more kills than the home team. By the end of the set, the away team had a clear lead and took the win, 25-20. With a 2-2 tie in the scoreboard, the game went to tie break. Once again, the away team overcame the Pirates and won 15-13, making the final score 3-2.

After the match, Mateus Martins, a junior opposite position player majoring in business, said the team gave the best they had, but they could not get the victory. Martins also said the crowd was important for the team, and they could feel the support inside the court.

“We are trying to get better every single day, so I believe that we got to keep focus in our goal that is the national championship,” he said.

The men’s volleyball team has four more games until the end of the regular season.