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The student news website of Omaha Central High School

The Register

The student news website of Omaha Central High School

The Register

Supernovas fall in first game but offer exciting environment

Fans+pack+CHI+Health+Center+as+the+Atlanta+Vibe+narrowly+led+the+Omaha+Supernovas+in+the+first+set+of+the+inaugural+game+of+the+Pro+Volleyball+Federation+on+January+24.+
Steven Dickerson
Fans pack CHI Health Center as the Atlanta Vibe narrowly led the Omaha Supernovas in the first set of the inaugural game of the Pro Volleyball Federation on January 24.

Jan. 24’s inaugural game of the Pro Volleyball Federation saw the Omaha Supernovas fall 3-2 to the Atlanta Vibe in a thrilling five set game. But the CHI Health Center was more bustling than ever. The crowd of nearly 12,000 was loud, energetic, and showcased exactly why Nebraska was the perfect spot for a professional volleyball team.  

The game started with a phenomenal light show, made by fans turning on flashlights. It was an interactive experience I hadn’t seen at a sporting event in a long time.  

The first set started slowly, but quickly became competitive and had fans on the edge of their seats. When it reached 24-24, everyone was standing up as the arena’s lights dimmed, spotlight focused on the court and fans screaming. However, a strong block and stunning attack from the Vibe saw Omaha lose the first set by two, 26-24. 

The second set was competitive the minute Atlanta’s Leah Edmond served. The first few minutes saw each team rally back and forth, constantly tying the score. As the set progressed, it stayed close. Atlanta’s Karis Watson had an attack that brought the team to a very intense set point that included a hotly contested net violation by Omaha outside hitter Jess Schaben-Lansman, giving Atlanta the second set 25-23.  

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As I watched the third set begin, I anxiously awaited what direction the set would take. I was secretly hoping the Supernovas would turn things around because I loved the atmosphere too much for it to be over in three sets.  

Thankfully, that wish came to fruition as the Supernovas pulled off a 25-17 win. The set was full of long rallies and exciting plays like the many hits from outside hitter Brooke Nuneviller. The set point at 24-17 was so exhilarating. I haven’t felt the tension and optimism of a volleyball crowd like that ever before. Following Atlanta setter Tori Dilfer-Stringer’s serving error, the arena erupted in cheering for the first win of a set in Supernovas history.  

The fourth set started strong for the Supernovas, with wild attacks from Bethania De La Cruz, Nuneviller, Sydney Hilley and Danielle Hart as well as many errors from Atlanta on passing and attacking. While it was generally close, Omaha dominated after it was 23-19, with a crazy attack from middle hitter Tori Dixon and a stunning, set-winning block from Schaben-Lansman. The crowd went insane as the game headed into a critical fifth set to decide who would take the win in the first PVF game ever.  

Competitive is an understatement for the mood of the fifth set. Almost every single point had fans standing, screaming, or booing. The serve was changing rapidly as each team went back and forth on winning and losing every point. De La Cruz was by far the Supernovas’ star of the set, with her speedy, ferocious serves and aggressive, spatially smart attacks. However, Atlanta’s Edmond dominated in wild attacks that took Atlanta from 13-13 to 15-13.  

While some were visibly disappointed in the tough Supernovas loss, almost everyone expressed happiness with the closeness and excitement of each set and how amazingly fun the game was. Afterwards, the team did autographs and photos, which had fans (including myself) lined up around the entire arena. Meeting the Supernovas players was super cool, and they all were extremely friendly and personable.  

The fans were the real winners here though. Everyone I met or interacted with, everyone who made it on the Jumbo-Tron (yes, I made it on there too), and everyone who went and got autographs all made the experience amusing and spectacular. I cannot wait to go to another game, and I would highly recommend checking out the Supernovas in their first season. Nebraska is definitely a volleyball state. 

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Steven Dickerson, Staff Writer
Hi, my name is Steven Dickerson (he/him). I am a sophomore and this is my first year on The Register. I was voted most likely to go blonde. A fun fact about me is that I am a big pasta salad fan.
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