The College Heights Cougars were on the verge of forcing a third and deciding set against the Duchess Park Condors.
Then Bryden Stephen stepped up to the service line. A string of points later, Stephen and the Condors were in full celebration mode.
Saturday at Duchess Park, the Condors beat the Cougars 25-14, 25-21 in the final of a four-team senior boys volleyball tournament. In the second set, the underdog Condors were trailing 21-17 but engineered the comeback on the strength of Stephen's arm. The Grade 12 back row specialist used a hard-to-handle float serve to befuddle the College Heights defence and, in the process, lifted the Condors to their first tournament title of the season.
"His float is like a laser beam," said Condors coach Keith Wood.
"It's really hard to see and it's really hard to pass."
The Cougars entered the match knowing they had beaten the Condors in two previous meetings. But, in both sets of Saturday's final, they had difficulty with their passing and, as a result, weren't able to generate much of an attack.
Meanwhile, the Condors got steady performances from Grade 11 power hitters Jonah Chevrefils and Andy Sivell and were able to pull off the upset.
"Our power hitters did OK but, honestly, we don't have a lot of offence," Wood said. "We're just a defensive team and we're digging up balls and putting them back effectively."
Setter Jeremy Mitchell - one of the best in the city at his job - was also a huge part of Duchess Park's success.
"He doesn't try to do anything too fancy - just runs a quick and effective offence," Wood said.
The D.P. Todd Trojans finished third and the North Peace Oscars of Fort St. John placed fourth.
The Condors, Cougars and Trojans will all be back in action this weekend when they compete in the annual Jon Bragg Memorial tournament at College Heights. The eight-team event starts Friday at 4:30 p.m. The final is set for 6:20 p.m. on Saturday.
In the senior girls division at the Duchess Park gathering, the Condors defeated the Cedars Christian Eagles in the final.
The Cedars senior boys, meanwhile, went unbeaten at a tournament in Vernon. Playing at Vernon Christian, the Eagles won every match in straight sets.