Tendring faced Newcastle Staffs on Saturday, November 21st. Staffs arrived game ready with a tough, 6-man squad. The first set would be a tough one as both teams battled out to a 20-20 tie. Staffs would go up 23-20 before Tendring mounted a comeback off of a Dovie block and a Kosta kill. The set would be tied 23-23 before Staffs managed to take the first set off of strong outside attacks.



The next set saw Tendring out to an early lead which they would keep for the remainder of the match. Staffs could find no stop for the superior Tendring middle attack as Guimond and Lawrence pounded it relentlessly up the middle. Number 11 for Staffs would get a swift kill in retaliation as the second set went to Tendring, match tied 1-1.


Passing issues, service errors, and hitting errors would allow Staffs to strike out to an early lead. Tendring's defense was not on par with the Staffs outside attack. Staffs were ninjas on the defensive side, managing to get touches on most of the Tendring attacks. The middle attack worked sensationally well for Tendring as they continued to retaliate as best they could. Eventually, off of strong kills from the Staffs outsides, Staffs would win set 3 up 2-1 in the match.


Alex Porter came on for Tendring in the fourth set, replacing opposite Stuart Dove. Tendring rallied around Porter and communication improved as they began to refocus mentally. Kills rained in from Guimond, Chilcoat, Lawrence, and Kosta as setter Nick Davies ran a terrifically balanced offense. Stellar defense from Davies would see Tendring take the fourth set 25-15. On to the deciding 5th set.


The fifth set was entertaining as both sides continued to battle it out to the bittersweet end. The Tendring benchmosphere and the amazing fans cheering from the sidelines brought the intensity to a fever pitch as both sides gave it their all. With Tendring up 14-11 everyone in the gym thought they had won it! But alas, Staffs fought back from the brink, siding out with an outside blast to bring the score 14-12. After two service aces on Tendring, Staffs tied the match 14-14. Another Staffs kill sent Tendring reeling, defending match point. Davies set Guimond for a spectacular over-the-top kill, tying the match at 15-15. Both teams battled back and forth, back and forth, as Tendring survived 6 match points eventually winning the fifth set 22-20 off of a Guimond block and a Chilcoat kill.