The 403 Selects 14U team brought their A game to VA Provincials this weekend in Edmonton. The coaching teams’ strategic plan for the girls to peak during Provincials clearly worked. We saw outstanding athleticism ranging from spikes to impossible digs, hard to pick-up serves and great play anticipation. The girls’ determination to win was evident as they put all the pieces in place to finish fourth overall in the province in Division 1.

 

Day One

403’s first match of the tournament was against TSAVC. They won the first set 25-16 from a combination of killer serves and great tips. Although they lost the second set 23-25, they came back with a third set win of 15-4, with the last point from an amazing play from the front row.

The second match, against SPVC Blizzard, gave the Selects a bit more challenge. Although they lost the match in three sets, the girls were not deterred. They rallied together as a team and gave Pandas Gambatte (Edmonton) a great battle. Although they lost in two sets (22-25, 23-25), it gave 403 the motivation they needed to have a solid cross-over match.

It was in the last match of the day against DCVC (Dawson Creek) that the coaches and athletes hard work came together to realize the team’s vision. Without a doubt, it was the best the Selects have played all year. In the first set, the girls won handily 25-13. The girls’ serves were consistent and strong, great offensive plays and solid blocks. They quickly won the second set, 25-18, securing a top 8 spot in playoffs. The parents, athletes, and coaches together were excited to celebrate the skilled demonstration of outstanding team-play.

Day Two

The first match of the day would see 403 up against the Pandas again. The Selects decided to dig in and give the Pandas a run for the win. Although they lost the first set 16-25, they battled through the second set to win 25-23. The girls all played so hard! They were getting their serves in, hitting hard and not letting a ball drop. The momentum from the game was contagious, as seen through the coaching staff and parents confidence that the girls would win. In the third set, the Selects quickly won 15-3 sending the Selects to semi-finals. It was an outstanding win with amazing plays by the Selects!

In the semi-final match versus ICE (Red Deer), 403 made ICE work hard. Although they lost the first set 13-25, they came back and worked hard in set 2, almost securing a win 23-25. The girls worked hard throughout both sets but it just wasn’t going to work out. After a long break, the bronze medal match against SPVC was a tough one. Although they lost both sets, they finished fourth overall in the province which is outstanding! We’re so proud of the athletes and coaches and loved every minute of each set. The Selects teamwork and sportsmanship were commendable and we can’t wait to see what happens at Nationals.

Final Thoughts

This weekend saw 403 Selects come together and turn their hard work and dedication at practice into a culmination of volleyball excellence. The strategic line-ups exemplified the athletes’ strengths allowing the team to demonstrate their outstanding skill and enthusiasm for the game.  There was no doubt that the athletes trust their coaches, looking at them for direction, and making adjustments to secure wins based on their instruction. When a loss was inching in, the Selects became more determined and played their best, strategically learning how to adjust play so they could win the next match. Nationals is sure to see the Selects shine!

Many thanks to Edmonton Saville Center for hosting Provincials and to all of the volunteers that made this weekend possible.