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Wardresses dethrone Pipeline to end five-year title drought

Kenya Prisons ended their five-year wait for a Kenya Volleyball Federation (KVF) women’s league title thanks to a 3-1 (25-19, 25-22, 22-25, 25-21) victory over arch-rivals Kenya Pipeline at Kasarani gymnasium yesterday.

Prior to the clash, Prisons had beaten both Bungoma County and Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) 3-0 to lead the standings of the round-robin playoffs by six points. Yesterday’s win gave them the maximum nine points for the trophy.

The victory also aided KCB to a second place finish after winning 3-2 against Pipeline and 3-0 over Bungoma for five points. Pipeline are third with four points while winless Bungoma finished last.

“We have waited for long for this achievement. I had a blend of youth and experience in my squad and that went a long way in giving us this win,” said Prisons head coach Josp Barasa.

Prisons led from the onset for a 8-6 in the first technical timeout of the first set but Pipeline would not go down easily as they scored two quick points to level at 8-8. Prisons held on to their lead for a 16-14 score in the second technical timeout and went on to clinch the set 25-19.

The second set started slowly, Prisons racing to a 8-3 lead and 16-8 in the two technical timeouts. Pipeline put up a spirited fight to deny Prisons and take the scores to 16-13. Prisons pulled away to a 20-17 score but Pipeline held on to their attack to level at 21-21 but the later won 25-22.

Pipeline, picked their first lead in the match at 7-6 in the third set to lead 8-7 in the first technical timeout. Prisons led 16-15 at the second technical timeout but lost grip on the match with the score tied at 19-19 to allow Pipeline to pull away and win the set 25-22.

The fourth set was a see-saw affair after the first technical timeout which Pipeline led 8-3 but Prisons scored quick points for a 8-11 count and went on to level at 13-13 to assume the lead at 15-13. The scores were again leveled at 18-18 but Prisons pulled away to a 25-21 win.

With the win, Prisons booked an automatic slot to the Africa Club Championships in Egypt early next year alongside KCB.  KCB Group Head of Corporate and Regulatory Affairs and KCB Ladies Patron Judith Sidi Odhiambo heaped praises on the team for the historic win, saying: “As KCB bank, we are very proud of what the ladies have achieved today.

It took a lot of sacrifice, dedication and hard work. We are now gearing up for major honours next year,” said Odhiambo. Unbeaten General Service Unit (GSU) led in all sets to defend their men’s title with a 3-0 (25-19, 25-22, 25-20) score against 2016 champions Prisons Kenya.

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