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Lily Sampson

Team Mariah receives the ball from Team Payton for the semi-final round

Lily Sampson, Writer

The second annual OHS Homecoming Volleyball Tournament took place on Monday, Sept. 28 at Lava Burgers and Wings. With a huge turnout of 12 teams, students relentlessly battled for first place. The games began at 7 p.m. Though the temperature was in the high forties, accompanied by a drizzling rain, the courts were filled with exhilarated players. Only one team could claim victory.

Of the twelve teams that signed up, six were senior teams: Team Annika, Team Chloe, Team Courtney, Team Maggie, Team Mariah, and Team Payton; three were junior teams: Team Damien, Team Lydia, and Team Marlee; two were sophomore teams: Team Abby and Team Kate; and one was a freshman team: Team Kennedy. In explaining how the bracket works, OHS student council volleyball chair and senior Grace Linders said, “The bracket is process of elimination, so as soon as you lose you’re done.”

Leading up to the final round, only four teams remained. Sophomore Team Abby faced senior Team Chloe, and senior Team Payton faced senior Team Mariah. Though Team Abby put up a fight, armoured in their USA gear, Team Chloe ultimately took the win. In the Team Payton vs. Team Mariah preliminary game, victory did not come so easy. Team Mariah, all decked out in their onesies, was up 24-23. Senior Dominic Valento, member of Team Mariah served the ball, but failed to get the ball over the net. The score was now 24-24. Team Payton had the ball. Payton made a quick, confident serve over the net, setting the play into motion. After several close calls, the ball finally landed pointedly in the sand on Team Payton’s half of the court. Team Mariah rushed to congratulate one another of their victory, now headed to the championship game. Expressing his disappointment, Member of Team Payton, senior Lincoln Maher said, “It was definitely a bummer, but I was glad that it was another team of seniors.”

Advancing into the final round was Team Chloe and Team Mariah. Describing the team’s mindset shift upon making it to finals, member of Team Mariah, senior Lindsay Bangs said, “We definitely thought we were gonna go out the first round. I think after we beat Payton’s team and made it to the finals we realized we were actually kind of good!” Prepared with a newfound confidence, Team Mariah went to face Team Chloe in the final round and won. The final score was 25-21. Team Mariah was congratulated with gold medals and cupcakes.

Through the cold weather and the drizzling rain, teams remained resilient, marking the second annual volleyball tournament a success.