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College volleyball team in national finals – again!

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VOLLEYBALL players from Warrington’s Priestley College have qualified for the national college finals for the second consecutive year.
Despite having to replace four of last year’s departing second years the team repeated their achievement to represent the North West in the AoC Sport National Championships.
“We had to ask around after the second years went to university to try and make up the team and we found some players who wanted to take up volleyball again,” said player Dan Burrows, who is coaching the team.
“Given how the team came together we gelled really well and everyone is able to make practice and seems to be enjoying it. I think I put this team on a par with last year’s, but we still have time to improve because the finals are not until April.”
Priestley qualified after finishing top in the regional tournament held at Manchester University. They enjoyed wins over Salford and Winstanley colleges, winning two sets to one and 26-24 respectively.
“Both were difficult matches because both teams got into our heads early on, but we were able to power through and showed real character,” said Dan, a former Birchwood High pupil who studies BTEC Sport Performance and Excellence at Priestley.
As well as the national finals Priestley have also won through to the quarterfinals of the AoC knockout cup where another match-up with Winstanley awaits.
A more professional approach has helped the Priestley team succeed this season with each match being recorded so that tactics, strengths and weaknesses can be analysed.
Sports tutor Katie Radford said: “The team are a dedicated bunch of lads and have done incredibly well so far.
“They work well as a unit and are really looking forward to representing the North West in the national finals.”

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