Blaze so close against Lynx
Again Blaze played well in parts, indeed extremely well, but ultimately failed to take the match. Lynx must be congratulated on maintaining form at important points in the match to secure only their 6th win of the season. Despite Blaze winning more points Lynx won 3-1 (25-23, 25-21, 11-25, 25,20).
Set one started lively with long rallies and exciting pick ups. From 7-8 at the first time technical Blaze scored a notable point with James diving to secure a great pick up and Luke French securing the point from a quick middle set. However Lynx stuck to their task albeit helped by Blaze service errors. The scores were 15-16 at the 2nd technical. but stretched to 19-17 before Blaze fought back to 23 -23. Unfortunately Lynx kept their form and finished the set 25-23.
Blaze started Set 2 poorly with 3 service errors but a series of find hits from James Munro meant Blaze were still competitive at 8-7.
Up to this point Blaze had trouble building any real momentum but then a string of penetrating serves from Toby French forced Lynx to take a time out at 11-14. Better defence also contributed to a 12-16 lead which soon became 12-18. However, then the “wheels appear to loosen”. Coach Darren Lewis took a time out at 14-18 particularly as Blaze had lost similar leads in recent matches. Unfortunately the tide could not be turned. Blaze no longer threatened on offence and the set was lost 25-23 on our service error.
From the lows of losing the second set Blaze began Set 3 on fire. A lead of 1-8 at the first technical was fully deserved. At 1-9 Lynx used up their second time out. Blaze was finally playing to their potential and following a minor blip of 3 points lost mid set the set was won easily 11-25. Blaze won the set with minimal errors and points coming from all varities of attack.
Inevitable Lynx struck back in Set 4 with renewed defence vigour and were quickly ahead 13-6. Blaze then struck back p bring themselves back into the game at 18-18. the away supporters made their presence known and were then hoping for a fifth set but Blaze form once again fell away and following spirited defensive pay from Lynx the match was lost.
Once again Blaze played well in parts but, similar to many other matches this season, failed to get over the line, giving up potentially winning positions. While disappointing there are lots of positives from this performance. Blaze has still to play the more crucial matches against Bristol and Birmingham. The results in these matches are likely to determine whether Blaze will stay in Division 1 for 2014/5 season.