No.1 team crushed in the semi’s, i get caught…Utah here we come

May 4, 2009 in Uncategorized

Last Thursday was the MPSF Semifinals for Mens Volleyball. The No.1 ranked team UCI was playing No.5 USC. I really wanted to get a direct overhead shot of one of the UCI players serving. I had gone up in the catwalks prior to the start of the game to check out locations I could shoot from and found that none of the walkways were directly over the back line. I knew that I wasn’t allowed to shoot from up there too, but I didn’t know exactly where to set up the camera as a remote. About five minutes before the first game started I went back up and chose my position that I would be shooting from for the first game. Below, UCI’s sophomore outside hitter Jordan DuFault spikes the ball as three USC opponents attempt a block.

Canon 1D Mark IIn, 70-200mm @ 200mm, 320iso, f10, 1/250th

Below, from right to left, Carson Clark, Austin D’Amore, and Taylor Wilson stay close for a block attempt.

Canon 1D Mark IIn, 70-200mm @ 200mm, 320iso, f10, 1/250th

Below, Carson Clark gets high above the net for a kill.

Canon 1D Mark IIn, 70-200mm @ 200mm, 320iso, f10, 1/250th

The higher angle for volleyball is definitely my favorite. While shooting volleyball last year I had to discard tons of photos because players faces were covered by either hands or the top of the net. The backgrounds are also much cleaner while shooting from a higher angle and the shadows from using my strobes are also nice to have. Below, Taylor Wilson rises high above the net for a kill while a helpless USC players awaits below.

Canon 1D Mark IIn, 70-200mm @ 200mm, 320iso, f10, 1/250th

Due to a very rough start by UCI, they went on to lose the first game. I quickly repositioned my strobes and changed positions in the catwalks to where I able to get my overhead shot and be unnoticed at the same time. Below, different angle of Ryan Ammerman receiving the ball from USC.

Canon 1D Mark IIn, 70-200mm @ 125mm, 160iso, f11, 1/250th

The overhead shot didn’t turn out exactly how I planned. I knew that I wasn’t supposed to be up in the catwalks during the game so I chose a “safer” position where I most likely wouldn’t be caught. There was however a better place to shoot from but it was a little too risky for a high profile game. Below, Sophomore outside hitter Cory Yoder serves the ball to USC in the second game.


Canon 1D Mark IIn, 70-200mm @ 115mm, 160iso, f10, 1/250th

Once again UCI was beat by USC and lost the second game. I quickly readjusted my lights and as I was coming down from the catwalks I was greeting by one of the Bren Events Center Staff…shit. I guess I wasn’t sneaky enough this time and was caught. The Bren staff guy wasn’t mean about it but just told me that I wasn’t allowed to be up there during the game. I thanked him for letting me know and continued to shoot the third game from the upper balcony. Below, UCI’s Kevin Wynne goes for a kill between two USC opponents.


Canon 1D Mark IIn, 70-200mm @ 195mm, 320iso, f10, 1/250th

Below, UCI’s Austin D’Amore jumps above two USC defenders for a kill.


Canon 1D Mark IIn, 70-200mm @ 200mm, 320iso, f10, 1/250th

So to end this night, UCI lost to USC in 3 games. They made tons of uncharacteristic mistakes and their play that night was not a good representation of what they have achieved this whole season. Which is why they were still given the No.1 seed at the NCAA Championships in Provo, UT. Therefore, I will be driving out to Utah with the sports editor and associate sports editor to cover the games. Check back next week for the Championship coverage.