A5 Family Wins Three More Bids ....All in the Open Division

A5 South 16 Jason Comes of Age; Makes A5 South History

April 22, 2019 -

A5 Family Wins Three More Bids
....All in the Open Division
A5 South 16 Jason Comes of Age; Makes A5 South History
A5 Family,
 
It was a thrilling Big South for our older teams last weekend.  I hate it that the tournament is played over two weekends this year because our youngsters are not able to get a glimpse of  their future by watching the older girls.  That said, our 15 and older teams experienced three days of outstanding volleyball against clubs from throughout the Nation.  14's and under will get their chance to excel this weekend.  
 
A5 won three more bids last weekend - all in the Open Division - bringing the Family's Bid Count to eight, with additional bites of the apple still to come at the Northeast Qualifier and Regionals, where we traditionally earn most of our bids. 
 
Big South Highlights
 
Last weekend yielded an impressive performance by the A5 Family on several levels.
 
First, we must recognize the achievement of A5 South 16 Jason for becoming the first team from A5 South to earn a bid to the USA Volleyball National Championship Tournament  in the Open Division. (Readers may recall that Barry Sanders stepped in as head coach when Jason was not able to perform the duties of head coach due to medical reasons.) 
 
This team has improved throughout the season, flirting with such success against open-level competition, but they were finally able to put it all together at Big South, finishing 2nd in a stacked 16 Open field, which included ten previously qualified teams.- four in the Open division.. (How about that for a run-on sentence?  Girls, don't do that on your SAT.)
 
Seeded 5th in the tournament, A5 South entered the Gold Medal Bracket with an 8 - 0 record and a bid in hand, so the pressure was off.  Wouldn't you know they drew their sibling - top seeded A5 16 Gabe - in the semifinal match.  That match featured thrilling volleyball at a high level, with A5 South coming out on top.  They lost the Championship Match to already-qualified Skyline to finish the tournament with a Silver medal - ahead of nine previously qualified teams - and the first Open bid to Nationals ever earned by an A5 South team..  THIS IS EXACTLY THE LEVEL OF COMPETITION WE WERE TRYING TO ACHIEVE WHEN WE BEGAN TO OPEN SATELLITE CLUBS YEARS AGO, and it is gratifying to see it beginning to come to fruition..  Congrats, ladies!
 
A5 15 Bob's journey was interesting to say the least.  They emerged from pool play unscathed, earning their way into one of two, four-team gold medal pools. With four teams previously qualified and three bids at stake, only one of the eight teams in the pools would go home without a bid. All A5 had to do was finish in 3rd place or higher in pool play and the bid would be secure.

A5 won their first match of the gold medal pool on Sunday night, meaning that a bid was theirs unless they finished in a three-way tie for second place, in which case tie-breaker matches would be played.  Wouldn't you know that's exactly what happened?  However, our girls were not going to be denied, as the last match for the bid was never in doubt.  Indy here we come!

A5 16 Gabe double-qualified  - no mean feat - finishing the tournament with a 9-1 record to earn a Bronze Medal.  Their sole loss was in the semifinals to A5 South.

A5 17 Jing's final match on day 2 didn't finish until 10:30 p.m..  The girls then had to drive home, get some sleep, and then arise early and fight rush hour traffic to be ready to play first thing the following morning.  They were understandably exhausted.  Nonetheless, the team finished the weekend with a 9 - 1 record, their sole blemish being a three-set loss to eventual champion Top Select in the semifinals.  They went home with Bronze medals and a coveted bid to Nationals in the 17 Open Division.
 
A5 16 Stephen can tell you a little about exhaustion.  As is typical for many of our teams playing in the American division, they breezed through pool play without being seriously challenged.  However, the road gets rougher with bracket play on day three, where 24 teams are still in contention and it is one-and-done -- lose and go home - and only one bid is awarded.
 
These girls played their hearts out on Monday - playing five matches, with every one of them going three sets.  They finished the tournament with a 10-1 record and a silver medal -- not too shabby in a field of 128 teams.
 
Jones Named to 30 - under - 30 List by AVCA
 
Congrats to GA5/A5 alumna and current A5 18 Scott and Emory University Assistant Coach Brianna Jones for being named to AVCA's 30-under-30 list.  The award was created ten years ago to recognize up-and-coming volleyball coaching talent.  Check it out by pressing this link.


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A5, A5 Gwinnett, A5 South and A5 Chattanooga routinely send 40-50 players a year on to play in college.

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11000 Alpharetta Hwy
Roswell, GA 30076
Phone: 770-346-8878

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