RENO, Nev. (June 29, 2013) – In the first championship match of the 2013 USA Volleyball Boys’ Junior National Championships, Warriors VC 12 took home the gold medal in the 12 Club division over Vaqueros 12-1 in two sets (25-18, 28-26).
“We were working on the mental toughness of the kids and keeping them focused on the game and not losing concentration,” Warriors VC 12 Head Coach Ernesto Garcia said. “[Throughout the match] I always thought we were going to win.”
In the first set of the gold-medal match, Vaqueros 12-1 (Bayamon, Puerto Rico) struck first but Warriors VC 12 (Vega Baja, Puerto Rico) scored seven consecutive points to jump out to an early 7-1 lead. Warriors VC 12 led by as many as seven points well into the first set. Vaqueros 12-1 fought back to within three, bringing the score to 19-16, but were unable to capitalize on this momentum as Warriors VC 12 took the set.
It was déjà vu to start off set two as Vaqueros 12-1 scored the first point. But again, Warriors VC 12 came back strong and took a 6-2 lead. Vaqueros 12-1 wouldn’t go quietly, fighting to within one and finally tying the score at 15-all. Vaqueros 12-1 took its first lead of the match at 17-16, but Warriors VC 12 earned that point right back on an attack error.
Vaqueros 12-1 stretched its lead to four, up 24-20 and looking to even up the match at one set apiece. But Warriors VC 12 scored four consecutive points to tie the set and one more to take the lead. The teams traded points, tying the score at 25 and 26 apiece, before Warriors VC 12 brought it home at 28-26.
“We had a difficult time getting here,” Garcia said. “The airplane left us so we had to take a bus from San Francisco to here. So this is the greatest and the happiest and amazing.”
Claiming bronze are Bayou Boys 12U (New Orleans, La.) and HVA 121 Young Guns (Houston, Texas).
2013 USA Volleyball Boys’ Junior National Championships
12 Club: Gold – Warriors VC 12 (Puerto Rico); Silver – Vaqueros 12-1 (Puerto Rico); Bronze – Bayou Boys 12 U (Bayou), HVA 121 Young Guns (Lone Star)
13 Club: July 2-4
14 Open: June 28-July 1
14 Club: June 28-July 1
15 Open: June 29-July 2
15 Club: June 29-July 2
16 Open: June 30-July 3
16 Club: June 30-July 3
17 Open: July 1-July 4
17 Club: July 1-4
18 Open: June 27-30
18 Club: June 27-30