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Volleyball - Fri, Aug. 11, 2017
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Juan Dolio, Dominican Republic - After facing multiple schedule changes between Thursday night and Friday morning, the Knights volleyball team got a concrete plan that led to an enjoyable Friday full of activities. The day was spent with a tour of the Lily House, shopping and touring the market district of Santo Domingo, and capped off with the final match of the week. 

Friday morning began with a trip to the Lily House, a mission home where trafficked women are brought in off the street to be rehabilitated. Workers at the house go out to the streets and spread the word of God to the women that are being trafficked, and then bring them in to train the ladies into other professions, giving them skills necessary to be successful in their lives. 

Following the visit to the Lily House, the team hopped back on the bus and headed into the capital of Santo Domingo for the fourth straight day to not only play, but to do some sight-seeing as well. The first sight on the trip was at the Christopher Columbus Lighthouse, also known as Faro a Colon. The stop didn't last long, as there was much more to do in a limited amount of time. The bus stopped along the side of more landmarks as we traveled closer to the next destination, with our translator Hector providing some insight on the historical information about each landmark. 

The next stop was a big one for the team, as they stopped for an hour at a giant strip mall, with dozens of stores all piled in one building. There were many options and neat souvenirs to choose from in the stores, ranging from machetes to coffee mugs to bracelets. Everyone on the team was able to take home a souvenir after bartering and dealing for a better price, making for many happy campers. 

After spending time browsing the store fronts, the group took a walk through the city, seeing more of the historic landmarks and buildings that the Dominican Republic has to offer. From there, it was lunch, dining out at a pizza restaurant near the Caribbean Sea. Once lunch was finished up, it was time to play. 

As it has been the past four days, Marian once again came out on top winning in straight sets. Today's opponent came in the northern part of Santo Domingo, as the Knights played a club team known as Invivienda. Invivienda had a wide range of girls playing against Marian, as the team's youngest player was around 12-13 years old, with a pair of ladies around 30 years as well. Before and after the match, the groups took photos together. However, after the match was completed and Marian finished sharing their theme of "Scale the Wall," an emersion of selfie requests and photo ops for the Knights took place, with dozens of Dominican volleyball players asking to get a picture with as many players as possible. The moment was truly humbling for all of the Marian players, seeing how much it meant for the Invivienda Club to play against an American team.

Following the game the team stopped at a close to home restaurant choice of Burger King®, wrapped up by devotions at SCORE. Tomorrow the Knights will have a day of fun and relaxation, as the group will be snorkeling off the coast of Catalina Island!

For pictures from today's trip through the shopping center and tourist stops, click here.

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