Completing their first competition since their move from Tennessee, the Texas Tyrants come home from the west coast, having finished 1-2 for the weekend. Having beaten last year’s runner-up, the OC Stunners, the tyrants have shown the league that they are a force to be reckoned with this season. It was evident that even with being a young team, the Tyrants have become one of the most established organizations in the league.
Coached by Mauro Grasso, the Tyrants did a fantastic job getting the most out of their roster as the only team in the league to use two setter-opposite combinations in each game. Pairing setter Gabriel Quinones with opposite Tim Johnson and setter Isaiah Acfalle with opposite Daniel Jacobs (who are also housemates), the two duos sub in and out for one another to always have their heavy hitters in the front row. The Texas Tyrants also showed how all-star players from the NAIA and Division 3 are just as good as any player from a Division 1 program or has played professionally overseas. Some notable standouts in their win over the Stunners include Lourdes University alumni Ryan Moune (MB, #15) and Graceland University alumni Anthony Robinson (OH, #1).
Those in attendance also saw that the Tyrants have already developed a growing fan base that came out in full in San Bernadino. Except for some other teams’ fans who are present for events at their home venues, this is the first time that fans of the NVA have traveled such distances to cheer on their teams. Their enthusiastic support is an excellent sign of where the league is going and the growing influence professional men’s volleyball has in the United States.
Right out the gate, the Texas Tyrants were faced against the three best teams in the league and came out with some impressive results. From here, the Tyrants continue to fight the rest of the NVA, where they will likely have higher odds in their favor move up in the rankings for the American Conference. Their next match will be up against Florida’s Southern Exposure as the team travels out for the NVA’s second event of the 2021 season in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Until then, fans can catch recaps of the Tyrant’s completed matches on Youtube at NVA USA and stay up to date with the team by following them on Instagram (@txtyrants) and Facebook.