As the volleyball season drew to a close for the area teams, most of the success stories came from junior teams, inspiring hope for much stronger senior teams in the next few years.
In girls’ volleyball, Wm. E Hay Grade 9 team won the CARA (Clearview Athletics and Recreation Association) tournament championship on Nov. 13 advancing to CWAJHAA (Central Western Alberta Junior High Athletic Association) tournament in Lacombe which took place last weekend.
Grade 9 girls’ team coach Audra Lotoski said her team’s CARA championship came at the end of “a very exciting match” against Theresetta of Castor.
Lotoski said the Grade 9 girls team ended the season with a great effort in Lacombe over the weekend.
“Although we did not advance out of our pool, we had a very strong season. The girls demonstrated great growth in their skills, and will no doubt be fine contributors to the JV and senior volleyball programs at our school,” said Lotoski. .
Wm. E Hay junior girls’ volleyball team, on their part, closed the season by taking part in a tournament in Camrose.
“Unfortunately the girls lost all three games that they played that night in very close sets,” said coach Hayley Leschert.
“Overall, however, the girls had a fantastic season. They worked hard as a team and did very well. They placed 8th overall, out of 12 teams. The girls should be proud of their commitment to the team and their accomplishments over the course of the season,” she said.
As for senior boys, they played their last games of the season in a weekend tournament and lost to Central Alberta Christian High School in two straight sets in their first round robin game and won the second against Ponoka in two sets.
In the playoffs, the senior boy Wildcats lost to both Camrose and Wetaskiwin in two straight sets.
Meantime, the junior boys’ team of the Donalda School achieved a great accomplishment by winning both CARA and CWAJHAA championships over two consecutive weekends.
Don Seale of the Donalda School said his Eagles won the CWAJHAA title for the fifth time in the team;s eight-year history.
“Our players worked hard to prepare for this tournament. We certainly had our share of sickness and injury this season, but were able to get healthy and peak on the stretch run,” says Don Seale, coach.
The tournament was played at Caroline School, Saturday, 21 November, and included teams from Spruce View, Crestomere, Alix, Rocky Christian, Brownfield, Coronation, and Caroline. In Round Robin play, Donalda had straight-set victories over Brownfield, Caroline, and Crestomere to qualify for the playoffs.
“We were seriously tested by Spruce View in the Semis,” says Seale, “Those guys hit and served hard, and covered the court very well. They had no holes.”
Donalda qualified for the CWAJHAA. tournament by winning CARA tournament held at Erskine School the previous weeekend, Saturday, Nov. 14. The Eagles went through the CARA. tournament without a loss, defeating a tough Halkirk team in the round robin, Theresetta in the semis, and Coronation in the