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The club team from 1988 on a trip to California to play UCLA, Pepperdine, and San Diego State

1988 club team1988 Warmup

 

Most recent team updates appear here on the home page, while older news bits can be found on the "news" page

Last Updated: April 2019

Irish Rally to a Better Than Copper Finish in Nationals 2019

 

During my freshman year of Notre Dame Men’s Club Volleyball, there was a rallying cry that echoes in my mind to this day. It was said at every tournament. It was said at every practice. It was the name of our volleyball group chat. “Better than Copper.”

 

That 2016 team fought valiantly, all the way to a Copper bracket championship. But we have continually sought more. Well, alumni, you can rest easy. We did it.

 

The Fighting Irish came into the National tournament as an undervalued four seed, a slanderous betrayal in my personal opinion. It was no matter. The Irish were unfazed. They opened against a tough Indiana team, pushing them to a tight 26-24 loss in the first set and ultimately a loss in the match. The Irish rebounded and fought hard against Florida the fifth seed in the tournament. A gut-wrenching third set loss 15-13 was hard to swallow. However, the Irish finished strong beating a very talented UCSD team in two sets.

 

However, due to the tiebreakers, the Irish had to play UCSD again. It’s hard to beat a good team three times in a row, and it wasn’t meant to be for the Irish. The loss sent them to a consolation bracket for the next day.

 

The Irish came out determined in day 2. The Irish lost their first match to a warmed-up Utah State team in another tough 3-set match. However, they bounced back, beating a strong Michigan State team in 2 sets, guaranteeing a place in the vaunted Bronze bracket. It was a triumph for the team, securing a finish that truly was better than copper.

 

In the bronze bracket, the Irish ran into a tough Missouri team. The Irish fought hard again before suffering another brutal 15-13 3rd set defeat. It was a trying tournament at times for the team, but full of high-quality play from all members.

 

It is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to Senior Middle Blocker and President Jack Waltrich. We will carry his legacy with us forever. However, we have Brian “Old Man” Messina taking over as president. I can guarantee he has full support of the team after earning zero votes against him during the election process. He may or may not have been running unopposed.

 

In all sincerity, it was a great season for the Irish. Returning most of the roster, the Irish are poised for a very strong 2020 season, and I already can’t wait for it.

Irish with a Strong Start to the 2019 Season

 

The Irish began the semester by bidding a fond farewell to Mikey Stefan as he leaves us for this place called Rome that I’ve never heard of. We will soldier on without our favorite, fun-loving team dad. All we can do is our best to gain his approval from across the pond.

 

On the bright side, the Irish welcome back Angelo Liu and Slater Chesser from their time abroad. We’ve missed them on and off the court and are excited to have them for the Championship run.

 

The Irish began their season with the Hoosier-Illini Classic in Bloomington this past weekend. It seemed as if nothing was going to go right for the Irish this weekend at the start. The Irish were seeded fourth out of five in a pool with Illinois and Oshkosh. When they arrived in Bloomington, there was no room at the inn (read as Motel 6).

 

The Irish travelers were able to secure lodging at a hotel that could only be described as the Best Value in America, though still worrying about how bad they might play tomorrow. Ultimately, christening the hotel as its first guests, the Irish were ready to come out firing on the weekend.

 

The first day saw the Irish claiming a monopoly on free volleyball, taking every match to three sets. Illinois and Oshkosh edged out close victories over the Irish. However, the Irish would take care of business against Miami (OH) and Western Michigan. On playing all four matches that day, junior Libero Brian Messina was quoted as saying, “Everything hurts…and I’m in the worst physical shape of my life.”

 

Day 2 proved more difficult for the Irish. Fearing for their lives overnight, the Irish suffered from a sluggish start. Purdue jumped out early and won the match in 2. In the first match of the silver bracket, the Irish ran into an angry Ohio State team also off a tough loss. It was tough going for the Irish with the loss to OSU ending their tournament. Proving how difficult their opening pool was, Oshkosh and Illinois met in the Championship of the tournament, with Oshkosh taking the win.

 

In all, the Irish had a successful trip to Bloomington, setting the stage for an exciting rest of the season. The Irish travel again this weekend to Iowa State for the Midwest 10 Championships, another tough test early in the season. Go Irish!