SEROWE: League chasers, Kalavango who are sitting at third place, exhibited strength and chemistry to demolish Diphatsa and Mag Stimela in tightly contested Mascom Volleyball League matches played on Saturday at the Serowe College of Education.
They won 3-0 in their first game against Diphatsa and 3-1 against Mag Stimela. The winning team coach, Kabelo Marumo said they are on a rebuilding mission and his players are showing positive signs of resilience and mental strength against experienced sides.
He is optimistic that what his team lacks in experience they can be make it up through youthful exuberance and the quality of the players. Marumo said the target is to finish in the top four and the long term is to challenge the perennial winners, Police VI and BDF VI for the title next season.
“Every game is a new challenge for us and we have learnt there are no pushovers in the men’s league,” he said, adding that, “the games are closely contested and consistency is still a challenge but my players are responding well.” “Our plan is more into the future. We have good players but they are inexperienced. I am happy because they can stand their ground against tough opponents with national team players such as Diphatsa.”
All the sets in their opening game against Diphatsa went to the wire. They won the first set 25-19 and were made to sweat harder in the second and the third, which they grabbed via 25-23 and 26-24 respectively.
Their strength was tested in the second game against the fiery Mag Stimela that followed immediately after their first. They won the opening set 25-21 and the Mahalapye side levelled matters with a 25-18 in the second set.
Kalavango’s Seychelles international hard
Although a little can be said about Kebitsang, a pair of setters, Kenneth Kareng and outside hitter Phemelo Lekoko took the bull by the horn,. Their combination proved too hard to contain for the Mahalapye boys. Kalavango took a two-point lead from the third set whistle and maintained until the 20th mark at 20-18 before the hard-hitting Lekoko unleashed five straight kills to end the set at 25-21 and hand his side a 2-1 lead.
The fourth set was a back and forth affair, a do-or-die for Mag Stimela and they lived up to expectations. They fought well until 20-20, but Kalavango, way too strong for their opponents, eventually prevailed.
They switched on, particularly when they crossed the 20th mark. Their blockers were excellent in positioning and timing and they dominated the net. Their hitters both back hitters, right and left hitters all took swings as they took control and buried the game at 25-20 to their 3-1 win.
“I am proud of the effort we are putting in these games. The intensity is high week in and week out ,but we have a good group of players that really want to win. It is hard to anticipate the results, but we are fighting well and I am positive we will maintain our momentum and hopefully our position too,” Marumo enthused after the game.