Premier #1 took place the weekend of Feb 8/9, with the 18U Selects opening up pool play against SAVC Boom 17U. The Selects came out strong in set 1 and carried the momentum all the way through this match, winning 25-3, 25-9. Next up was the Medicine Hat Volleyball Club 17U, and the Selects again displayed top form taking the match 25-10, 25-11. The final pool match was against the also undefeated LVC Kodiaks 18U. First place and therefore a preferential playoff position was on the line. The Selects retained their form from the first 2 matches and prevailed 25-21, 25-9.

Highlights:

Kass 31

Hart LS kill

Alex -> Polina

A top 16 finish assured, the Selects then had to wait for the outcome of the pre-crossover between Fernie 18U and Canuck 18U. Canuck emerged victorious, setting up a crossover at JPII school. The Selects / Canuck match produced many hard-fought points, with both teams displaying stellar defense. 403 took the match 25-16, 25-15, securing a top-8 placing and Division 1 for Premier 2.

Highlights:

Block / Avery transition kill

Dig -> Avery transition #2

 

Day 2 began with the quarter-final vs Cougars 17U. Set 1 was a back-and-forth affair, as these teams were clearly closely-matched. At 22-20 in favour of the Selects, the unthinkable happened. The Selects’ setter, Alex Sinik, landed awkwardly, causing a stoppage of play. It became clear almost immediately that this was no ordinary 3-minute injury timeout. The Selects watched as their friend and teammate had her broken arm stabilized enough to enable her to be moved off of the court, and ultimately to surgery. After a 45-minute delay, the teams were given a warm-up before play resumed. The Selects managed a set point before dropping the set 24-26. The Selects’ thoughts, however, remained with their captain and teammate, and they dropped the 2nd set 10-25.

The loss sent the Selects to the 5th-place game vs SEAVC Rattlers Black 17U. The athletes had a chance before the match to process what had just happened, and came out determined to finish strong. Despite falling behind in both sets, the Selects battled to a 25-19, 25-20 straight set win.

The Selects would like to thank all the coaches, teams, officials, volunteers and parents for their well-wishes and understanding during the delay. The respect that was shown during the delay illustrated just how much of a family we become as we compete together. One of the reasons we choose competitive sport for our children is the life lessons that are learned along the way. Premier 1 was an example of that.

Photo: Santisouk Phommachakr

The Selects’ next tournament is the NIT Triple Crown in Kansas City, MO Feb 1-17 where they will compete against some of the top 18U teams in the USA.