MARINE CORPS AIR STATION NEW RIVER, N.C. --
The Combat Logistics Regiment 27, 2nd Marine Logistics Group, intramural volleyball team faced the title-holding team from Marine Corps Air Station New River, in the championship game at New River Fitness Center.
The teams met twice previously in the season during two, best-out-of-three matches, in which New River won the first set and CLR-27 took the second. After a strong season-long competition, at which point CLR-27’s league record was four wins, two losses, New River closed it out as the league champions.
“Both are good, solid teams,” said Sgt. Joseph Ford, a legal services specialist with Service Company, CLR-27, and team member. “We see each other’s weak points and take advantage of them.” The players take note of weak servers or those who may not block the ball as well as others.
Ford, a strong hitter for the volleyball team, who also participates in the unit’s softball program, is also preparing for an upcoming deployment to Afghanistan. He is scheduled to deploy with Task Force 435, Marine Corps Central Command, within the next few weeks.
The majority of the members on the CLR-27 team played together while on a previous deployment to Iraq with the 2nd MLG. Ford saw it as a vantage point that most of them already played together and got to know each other well, melding them into a strong team with championship potential.
“We were already strong in Iraq, so we were a strong team when we started playing here,” said Ford. “Playing together while deployed created bonds between the Marines.”
CLR-27 may have been unsuccessful in beating New River for a second time, but the team enjoyed the competition, as well as the benefits of participating in an intramural sport.
“Playing on a team provides a form of stress relief, as well as the opportunity to meet people and just have fun,” said Gunnery Sgt. Herschel Moore, the data systems chief with Communications Company, CLR-27, team coach and player.
This form of stress relief allows Marines to unwind after long and often physically and emotionally taxing work weeks. It also helps many Marines to find confidence outside of work, explained Moore.
Due to limited facility and equipment availability, as well as time constraints and other obligations, the team was unable to practice more than three or four times throughout the month-long season, making the road to the championship game that much more rewarding.
“During our few practices, we focused on bump and set drills and scrimmaging against each other,” said Ford.
The team used the games to practice and work on techniques.
“Our real practice was during the games,” said Moore. “We did improve on working together, but could have improved on our communication skills during actual game play.
“Our goal this season was to have fun and let everyone play, no matter the skill level. I would say we met our goal,” Moore concluded.