Volleyball: TrailBlazers blow away KFS to close in on play-offs

TrailBlazers players celebrate a point

TrailBlazers players celebrate a point during their Kenya Volleyball Federation (KVF) National League sixth leg match against Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) at Nyayo Stadium in Nairobi on June 23, 2022.

Photo credit: Pool

What you need to know:

  • The win saw TrailBlazers move fourth on the standings with 31 points from 13 matches
  • TrailBlazers coach Geoffrey Omondi said they will not be complacent ahead of their remaining two fixtures
  • Defending champions General Service Unit and Kenya Prisons occupy the second and third positions with 31 points each from 12 matches and remain favourites to qualify for the play-offs



Newcomers TrailBlazers are on the brink of qualifying for Kenya Volleyball Federation National League men's play-offs after they defeated Kenya Forest Service (KFS) 3-1( 25-18, 25-22, 25-20, 25-19) during the final leg at Nyayo National Stadium in Nairobi on Friday.

The win saw TrailBlazers move fourth on the standings with 31 points from 13 matches.

Leaders Kenya Ports Authority have 34 points from 13 matches. Defending champions General Service Unit and Kenya Prisons occupy the second and third positions with 31 points each from 12 matches and remain favourites to qualify for the play-offs.

KFS are fifth with 26 points from 13 matches.

The top four teams at the completion of the regular season qualify for the play-offs.

TrailBlazers coach Geoffrey Omondi said they will not be complacent ahead of their remaining two fixtures.

“This win was important to us as it has hastened our qualification chances. We are keen to win against Nairobi Prisons and Rift Valley Prisons to seal our play-offs position. I can’t really say much but it’s humbling,” said Omondi.

KFS coach Wachira Gatuiria conceded defeat.

“It’s unfortunate that our race for play-offs slot has come to an end. We now look forward to finishing the league in a good position but it has been an amazing competition,” offered Gatuiria.

KFS coach Gatuiria opted to start with second choice setter Julius Mwai ahead of Mathias Kemboi as TrailBlazers led 9-6 in the first set.

Opposite hitter Moses Sialo and middle blocker Dominic Chelule powered the newcomers to a 17-11 lead with quick attacks as their opponents looked disorganised and out of sorts.

TrailBlazers libero James Mutero's good reception was key to setter Jean Claude's perfect distribution upfront as they stretched the lead 23-16 and bagged the set at 25-18.

In the second set, setter Kemboi was introduced as the two teams tied 10-10. However, KFS poor blocks allowed their opponents to open a two-point lead 12-10.

Chelule returned to haunt KFS with his razor blade attacks to propel TrailBlazers to a comfortable 18-13 lead.

Kemboi, Michael Wanyoike and Julius Lelei bagged quick points for KFS to close the gap 18-21 but that was far they could go as TrailBlazers won the set 25-22.

KFS took a slim 6-4 lead in the third set, but allowed their opponents back in the game. Both teams then tied 9-9,13-13 and 15-15 before KFS changed tactic to use quick balls in the middle position as they pulled away 19-17 and secured the set at 25-20 to trail their opponents 2-1 in set scores.

In the fourth set, TrailBlazers attacked from the word go and led 12-7 and 19-14.

Individual effort from KFS opposite attacker Calistus Kasili was not enough as they trailed 16-23 before their opponents won the set 25-19 and the match 3-1.

Collated results

Equity Bank 3-1 Administration Police (AP) Kenya (25-17, 25-17, 22-25, 25-21)

Nairobi Prisons 3-1 Vihiga County (25-18, 25-19, 20-25 ,25-22)

Western Prisons v Vihiga County (25-18, 25-23, 20-25, 25-16)

Saturday fixtures

Rift Valley Prisons v Kenya Defence Forces 9am

KFS v General Service Unit 11am

TrailBlazers v Nairobi Prisons 1pm

Administration Police Kenya v KPA 3pm

GSU v Central Prisons 5pm

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