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Women’s Volleyball and Men’s Soccer Teams Win Nationals

Women’s Volleyball Wins Five National Championships in Five Years

Clearwater Christian College participated in the 2010 NCCAA II National Volleyball Championship this past weekend at the Kissimmee Civic Center. The team captured another national championship banner for the fifth straight season marking their tenth national title in the past 16 years.

During the three-day event, Clearwater went undefeated in pool play winning matches against Multnomah, Grace University, Lancaster, and Maranatha. On Saturday, in the semi-final match, the Lady Cougars defeated Kentucky Christian University in three straight sets, placing them into the championship match against Ozark Christian College. Ozark brought a 36-0 record coming into the national championship match.

This is the fifteenth time the Clearwater volleyball team has faced off for the NCCAA national title and their experience was definitely an advantage over Ozark who was appearing for the first time in the national championship match. Clearwater came out strong in game one and dominated with their outstanding defense and solid offense to win 25-14. During game two, the Cougars continued their explosive attack led by setter Elisabeth Ennis and hitters Richelle Bucklin, Emma Kile, and Amanda Bucklin, while the defensive effort was sparked by senior libero, Danielle Heffernan and sophomore Amanda Ison. The Cougars won set two, 25-13. However during game three, the Ambassadors settled down and fought hard to get back into the match keeping the score close throughout. Finally with the score 24-21 in favor of CCC, senior Danielle Heffernan stepped back to serve an ace to win the final point of the match and to secure the fifth straight NCCAA National Volleyball Championship for the Lady Cougars.

According to Coach Denny, “We are very thankful for the successful year that the Lord gave us. After graduating three key starters from last year’s championship team, we had some big spots to fill. The Lord brought in some great new players while returners really stepped up big for us. The amount of improvement seen on this year’s squad from the start of our season to now was tremendous. I really do not think many people thought we could win nationals again this year, but through hard work and determination, the Lord once again allowed us to bring home the banner.”

View the complete women’s volleyball championship article. Visit the photo gallery for more photos from the tournament.

Men's Soccer Wins Second Straight National Tournament

Clearwater Christian College won its second straight NCCAA D2 National Soccer Championship, defeating Ohio Christian University 2-0 in the national championship final. Tyler Spraul and Carl Lassegue scored in the first half as the Cougars built an early lead and never looked back.

Clearwater came out strong in the first half, dominating possession against the Trailblazers and creating numerous scoring chances. The Cougars broke through in the eleventh minute following a score by team captain Tyler Spraul on a rebound from Drew Custer’s break free and cross to Juan Robayo. It was a clean shot at Spraul's feet for the finish. Spraul's goal was his fourth of the tournament and eighteenth of the season.

The second goal came in the 34th minute as Carl Lassegue knocked down a ball over the top from Adam Beam and calmly blasted the shot past the Ohio keeper.

In the second half, Clearwater continued to dominate possession, but couldn't capitalize. For the match, the Cougars outshot the Trailblazers 18-5. As the game ended, the Cougar team celebrated their second consecutive national championship with a huge crowd of loyal fans that made the trip to Kissimmee for the final.

After the win, Coach Whitaker commented about the season and the win: "This was a great way to cap off an amazing season. I'm so proud of our guys and the way they have played and continued to improve all season. This win was the result of a lot of hard work and a team-first attitude. I'm happy for this outstanding group of seniors who have worked so hard and been the cornerstone of our team.”

View the complete men's soccer championship article. Visit the photo gallery for more photos from the tournament.