Volleyball Horsham nab gold and silver at state championships

DIG: Horsham's Cam Robinson was named in the men's division one All Star Seven at the Victorian Country Volleyball Championships. Picture: SAMANTHA CAMARRI

DIG: Horsham's Cam Robinson was named in the men's division one All Star Seven at the Victorian Country Volleyball Championships. Picture: SAMANTHA CAMARRI

HORSHAM matched last year's medal haul from the Victorian Country Volleyball Championships with one gold and one silver medal.

Volleyball Horsham's division one women defended their gold medal from last year's championships with an impressive display against rival Latrobe Valley in the final.

Latrobe Valley looked to have the upper hand when it won the first set 27-17 in the replay of last year's gold medal match.

With Latrobe Valley having already beaten Horsham during the tournament's round robin stage, things looked grim, but Horsham coach David Berry said his team simply stepped up.

"The girls were a little slow to get started and the way we were playing wasn't quite right, but we changed it up in the second and were more attacking with our options," he said.

"The girls just wore them down and kept making the opposition play.

"We always keep it in play and more times than not the opposition will make an error."

Horsham rebounded to take the second set 25-19 and won a tough 25-23 set to work their way on top.

The team was ahead 17-5 in the fourth set and cruised to its second gold medal and the second division one gold medal in Volleyball Horsham's history.

Berry said it was an outstanding achievement to back up last year's success.

"Last year was a surprise gold medal, but this year we knew Latrobe Valley was coming for us," he said.

"We were the hunted this time rather than the hunter, but the girls handled it really well."

Horsham's Jess Radford, Siobhan Robinson and Ballarat fill-in Georgie Hassell were named in the division one women's All Star Seven.

There was more heartbreak for the Horsham men in division one.

The team had won five bronze medals six years prior to 2013, and made the gold medal match last year before losing to Bendigo.

Bendigo again relegated the team to silver after winning the final three sets to zero.

Horsham was only able to field seven men in its division one team.

Berry said the team was simply worn down by the time it played in the grand final.

"They ran out of puff, and eight games in three days with seven players took its toll," he said.

"They were up 18-13 in the first set of the gold medal match, but Bendigo started to lift with some strong defence and they were too good."

Horsham's Matthew Berry and Cam Robinson were named in the men's division one All Star Seven.

The rest of the side was made up of their Western Phantoms team-mates.

Sunraysia's Brad Mason and Paolo Antonio Mecci and Bendigo's Jimmy Winzar, Matt Gordon and Andrew Fox all impressed.

Horsham's division two men and women both finished well off the pace, but Berry said it was a good learning experience.

Murtoa's Jayden McQueen was named in the division two men All Star Seven in his first country championships.

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