Grand Rapids Christian played host to the first-ever Michigan Boys Volleyball Regional Semi-finals where the #2-seeded Eagles faced #1-seeded West Ottawa. In the other semi-finals match, #1-seeded Kalamazoo Christian faced off against #2-seeded Grand Haven. The night began ceremoniously as Grand Rapids Christian junior Liseana Fisher powerfully sang the National Anthem.
West Ottawa entered the match as a #1 seed, finishing the regular season as the #1 team in the Lakeshore Conference behind their 10-0 record. The Eagles had faced West Ottawa once before in a non-conference contest, narrowly winning a best-of-three match in a tie-breaker set. For this re-match, the Eagles were excited to play in front of their home crowd, and that excitement was very evident in the first set. The Eagles converted that energy into aggressive serving, going on a lengthy opening scoring run behind the jump float marksmanship of junior right side hitter Jordan Bergsma, building an early ten point lead. West Ottawa was visibly demoralized and would not be able to cut into that early lead, resulting in a sizable first set win for the Eagles (25-12).
In the second and third sets, West Ottawa turned up their own aggressive play with strong, top-spin jump serves and better offensive execution. The Eagles responded with calm and controlled serve receive and defense behind freshman defensive specialist/ right side hitter Tanner Warners, sophomore defensive specialist Joe DeVries and Bergsma. This controlled defense converted to high-energy offense with signature kills from junior outside hitter/ setter Evan May with assists from sophomore setter Jordan Vanderkamp. Sophomore outside hitter Irvin “Bear” Burt (blocks, kills) and Bergsma got in on the offensive attack as well with assists from May. While West Ottawa fought to stay in the second and third sets, the Eagles showed poise, not wanting to let their dominant first set play go to waste, leading to a gratifying, straight-set victory over a very tough opponent (25-12, 25-23, 28-26). The Eagles would now advance to the Regional Finals.