Best of Performance Nike 18 Gold Challenge: Titanium Comes Out on Top
Back in January, Nebraska ONE 17 Titanium got their season off to a hot start by winning the three-day Northern Lights Thaw Tournament in Omaha. They breezed through pool play and ended up going undefeated through the entire tournament without…
Back in January, Nebraska ONE 17 Titanium got their season off to a hot start by winning the three-day Northern Lights Thaw Tournament in Omaha. They breezed through pool play and ended up going undefeated through the entire tournament without dropping a single set. Since then, they had a top 5 finish at the President’s Day Classic in the 17 Open division and then won the Performance Nike 18 Gold Challenge yesterday.
Yesterday this Titanium squad had to face off against Club Legacy 18 Rox and long-time rival Premier 17 Gold in pool play at the Performance Nike 18 Gold Challenge. The matchup against Premier 17 Gold was the most anticipated match, considering the history they have against the 17 Gold squad.
Once high school season is over and club season begins, there’s a whole different set of rivalries on display at tournaments between different clubs. This Nebraska ONE squad and Premier Gold have one of the best rivalries in the state during the club season. Over the years, these two teams have finished at the top of their respective age division and they never fail to disappoint when they go head-to-head against each other. They’ve competed against each other at local tournaments, at regional championships, during three-day tournaments, bid tournaments and at national qualifiers. Last year the two teams began playing at 8:00 am in the Great Plains Region bid tournament and they were the last two teams standing after 6:00 pm, battling for the two bids to nationals. Both teams have multiple college commits/prospects and it makes their matches that much more exciting to watch.
Yesterday Nebraska ONE 17 Titanium got their first win ever against Premier 17 Gold. They carried the momentum of that win into tournament play later on yesterday afternoon. Titanium beat Premier 16 Gold in the semifinal match in 2 sets, then beat an extremely solid Premier 15 Gold squad in 3 for the tournament championship. Beating all 3 Premier teams was huge for Titanium considering all 3 of those Premier teams qualified for the Open division at nationals last year in their respective age divisions.
This Nebraska ONE 17 Titanium squad is hoping to play in the Open division at nationals themselves this summer. After last year’s successful 3rd place finish in the 16 National division at the USA Girls Junior Nationals in Minneapolis, Titanium is ready for Open level competition at nationals. They will be playing in the 17 Open division at the AAU National Championships in Orlando this summer, but could potentially play in the 17 Open division at the USA Junior National Championships too if they were to qualify Open for that tournament in Detroit this summer. After yesterday’s tournament win, Titanium is ready for more Open level competition at the Colorado Crossroads Qualifier next weekend in Denver.