Ballymoney Blaze mens 2nds were in action again last Monday night when they hosted Lisburn based Civil Service mens 1sts in a league fixture at Dalriada School sports hall. Blaze went into the match on a high looking to continue their recent run of form after they emerged victorious against Queens university the previous week, which was also a league fixture.
Team captain Jonny McClenaghan set the tone for the night and led the attack from the start of the first set when he found himself on the end of a series of good rallies to give Blaze an early lead. The young players on the court followed this with some good attacking play by outside hitter Callum Currie and middle player Peter Marshall to win the set comfortably 25-21.
The second set was much the same as the first but this time it was the turn of the experienced players Kevin Uprichard and Ian Walker to combine well together and set up attacks from the outside position around the Service blockers. Blaze won the second set 25-19 to make it 2-0 in the match needing just 1 more set for victory in the best of 5 match.
Blaze, now in cruise control, went into the third set brimming with confidence and relaxed into what they were sure would be the closing stages of the game, but when Civil Service fought back with a string of good attacks Blaze were flustered on court and found themselves a few points adrift of the visitors. Late on in the set, after a tactical 30 second time out was called by Blaze captain Jonny McClenaghan, Blaze were a lot more settled on court and soaked up the remainder of the Service attacks before winning the set comfortably 25-21 and therefore winning the match 3-0.
Blaze would like to thank 1st referee Alan McKnight, 2nd referee Matthew Scott, scorekeepers Sarah Dempster and Sarah Scott, and the spectators for their support during the game. This win makes it two out of two for Blaze in the 1st division which started after Christmas and sees them top of the league with maximum points.