Victoria’s Uni Blues have won an incredible fourth women’s Australian Volleyball League final and the Queensland Pirates have achieved revenge for a shock loss 12 months ago to win the men’s title at the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre.
The Uni Blues, led by helloworld Volleyroos coach Shannon Winzer and including several Australian team members, were too strong for the Queensland Pirates in a one-sided gold medal match, eventually winning 3-0.
Volleyroo Hannah Martin was outstanding for the Blues, and was named the MVP of the finals series. She had good support from Volleyroos teammates and Uni Blues captain, Shae Sloane, and Jamie-Lee Morrow.
“This means a lot, we’ve put a lot of hard work in over the past few years,” Sloane said.
“We didn’t think we could get here. We won the first one, and then had a bit of momentum and won two, and then won three.
“At the start of this year we really wanted to get the fourth one and do something that no other club has ever done. We worked extremely hard, it’s so exciting and something very special.”
The Queensland Pirates were still smarting from a shock loss in last year’s grand final to the Canberra Heat, after they had navigated the entire season without losing a match.
But with the addition of former Volleyroo and finals MVP, Benjamin Bell, to the line-up, the Pirates were a formidable combination.
Shane Alexander was again outstanding for the Pirates, with the 3-0 win giving the Pirates their third title in the past four seasons.
In the bronze medal matches, the VVA Vultures shocked the Adelaide Storm in the men’s competition 3-1, while in the women’s competition, the Sydney Amazons, in their first season in the AVL, beat the WA Pearls 3-0.
24 hours earlier the Amazons had pushed the Uni Blues to five sets.