ANSBACH, Germany (March 30, 2022) – Ramstein spiked Aviano in two sets, 25-20 and 25-17, to win the 2022 Installation Management Command-Europe Varsity Volleyball Tournament March 27 at the Katterbach Fitness Center.
The tournament started March 25 and featured a mix of six teams from the Army and Air Force installations across Europe.
While it is an Army-hosted tournament, Aaron Jones, IMCOM-E G9 program analyst and tournament organizer, explained, “We opened it up to all the bases in Europe that way we can get as many teams as possible and have a high level of competition.
“(We wanted to) bring back some of that competition among the forces and provide as many opportunities we can for the service members, family members, and civilians to compete at a high level,” Jones said.
Ramstein had a bye in the quarterfinals and faced Lakenheath in the semifinals to advance to the championship game. Aviano had a bye in the quarters and beat Stuttgart in the semis to advance. Lakenheath, who beat Wiesbaden in the quarterfinals, and finished in third with a three-set win, 25-14 24-26 15-9, over Stuttgart who beat Hohenfels in the quarters.
“(Winning) feels really good, we’ve been practicing for a while and this is our first real tournament,” said Team Captain Tyrone Choice, assigned to the 24th Intelligence Squadron on Ramstein. “We have great camaraderie, we come together as a group, on and off the court.”
Ramstein’s Edgar Mendoza, assigned to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, was recognized as the tournament’s MVP. “It feels awesome, I have really good teammates,” he said. “It (the tournament) was competitive, the other teams brought some good people and it’s nice to get back out after COVID.”
This was the first volleyball tournament in 10 years held by IMCOM-E. This was the second IMCOM-E sports tournament this year that Katterbach Fitness Center hosted. The fitness center also hosted the IMCOM-E Varsity Basketball Tournament in February.
“First and foremost, Katterbach Fitness Center is a great facility able to run two courts at one time which is really effective for tournament-style play,” said Jones when asked what made Ansbach the location of two IMCOM-E tournaments in one year. “Second is the staff, Chris (Cornelison) and his staff do a great job when I come in.
“They are very supportive always looking to have fun, be a part of the program, and really take ownership of the program,” said Jones. “It makes it easy for a guy who’s not here to come in run a tournament because they have everything set up and ready to go.”