The Samford Intramural Volleyball Women’s League crowned a new champion last night. Samford DPT took home the crown in a fierce battle against Chi-O.
The championship tournament kicked off last week with semi-final games. The sisters of Zeta Tau Alpha and Chi-O played, while Tri-Delta and the girls of Samford DPT – Physical Therapy graduate students, faced-off.
The tournament ended last night with a Samford DPT 2-1 win over Chi-O with each set ending with less than a three point difference.
But the win was not the only thing that mattered to these girls.
Intramural Volleyball has become a way for many to return to the sport they once loved, without the pressure that comes from playing for a select team or even a Division I athletics program.
At least it has come to mean something more to former volleyball players Rachel Hagen and Aly Durban.
“I’ve really loved intramural volleyball,” said Hagan, who played varsity in high school. “I think it is a really good way to get girls and guys to come back to a sport we played in high school and just kind of give a level of competition that’s fun to play at but isn’t too grueling.”
A variety of sophomore, junior and senior Tri-Delta sisters comprised Hagen’s team. The team played three regular-season games, winning one and losing the other two, and made it to the second round of the playoffs.
“I really enjoyed this season,” said Hagen. “It was a really fun time getting to get back together with a lot of girls from my sorority and just play the sport that I loved growing up.”
Former Samford and Division I setter, Aly Durban, and newly inducted Zeta sister, found the season fun and was happy to play with her new sorority sisters.
“It’s been nice to be able to play volleyball again,” said Durban. “I think our team has done really well considering we have never played together before.”
Zeta played three regular-season games, winning all three 2-0, and made it to the second round of the playoff tournament as well. The team won 1-0 against HootieBoom, a Chi-O team, before ultimately falling to the Chi-O A-team in the following round 2-0.
Even though IM Volleyball is not the same as Division I Volleyball across the country, there is a sense of family and camaraderie between players and teams. There was not the same amount of pressure on players to perform, as seen with Division I athletes.
“DI, it was more go, go, go and everything was planned out,” said Durban. “This has kind of been like, you show up ten minutes before, you don’t really have to warmup; you just get to play for fun which was definitely an element I missed.”
Even though IM Volleyball has come to a close, there are still more IM Sports available in the spring for Samford Students!