Dundee’s men secured second place in the SVL League 1 and a top 3 play-off place with an excellent 3/2 win over Edinburgh Jets in their last regular season game. With an unfamiliar line-up with starters Mike Coward, Rad Marinov and playmaker Barry Millar all missing there was promising signs early in the opening set for the Dundee side. Dave Bonnar and Mark Donnachie both had to step and an become first choice hitters and began to score points from the left side of the court. Jets had a slender 15/13 lead then a run of points from Lewis Crockart’s serve gave the visitors a chance as they led 23/22. Both sides traded points, but it was Dundee that came out on top winning the set 28/26 with two quick scores from Oz Dowie and Dave Bonnar.
The joy of winning the set was short-lived as the home side raced into a 10/2 lead in the second set. Dundee’s momentum had gone, and they found winning side out points difficult as Jets giant blocker, Peter Hockey, scored several net blocks as they took the set 25/9. Stand-in playmaker, Kevin Chisholm, then allied his troops and helped them find gaps in the Jets defence as Dundee built up a 16/13 lead. Hitting past Hockey and his block was difficult and pressure built against the Dundee attack and despite scores from Donnachie and Craig Goldthorp Jets took a close set 25/23.
The fourth set followed a similar pattern with Dundee ahead and struggling at time to find power shots to score points. A change of speed of attack on the left side of the court helped Dundee level the match as they took the set 25/23 to force a tie-break 5th set. Bonnar and then Crockart both scored points from their serve and the teams changed ends with Dundee up8/5. Keven Chisholm was able to give the hitters on the right side of the court some space to attack with clever ‘sets’ and Dundee help a 12/8 lead. Dowie scored a net block and then two hits from Donnachie and then Dowie to win the set 15/10 and secure second place. The top 3 play-offs include Dundee, Edinburgh University and Edinburgh Jets with games, home and away, in March and April.
(Game Date 02/02/2019)