The Prince Rupert Rainmakers junior girls’ volleyball team was in action this past weekend as the squad attended the ‘A’ zones championship in Terrace. After some intense play, the Rupert athletes claimed second place.
“The weekend’s [slogan] was ‘Comeback is real’, because we were able to get ourselves out of many tight spots with skilled play this weekend,” said coach Nancy Le.
The junior girls opened up against Hazelton, winning 25-13, 25-18 and then they defeated Smithers in a close match, 26-24, 27-25.
These wins moved the Rainmakers on to the semi-finals against Skeena Secondary.
The game had ups and downs, and at one point in the match Skeena was up 10-17 in the first set, but the Rainmakers were able to come back and win the set 25-22.
CHSS dropped the second set 17-25, but the athletes knew what was possible and stayed hopeful and humble. They later rallied and won the third, decisive set 17-15.
Janna Nelson had a very strong tournament and was able to score the winning point against Skeena. She was the MVP in three out of four Rupert play-days, and was CHSS’ MVP during this weekend as well.
Tournament All-Stars also included Emily Cavin and Lauren Santiago. According to coach Nancy Le, “Cavin and Santiago had everyone’s backs on the court and did not let the ball drop without a fight”.
The finals were played against Caledonia. The athletes gave it their all and had their opponents working hard up to a 13-13 score during the first set, but were unable to hold their momentum and fell 16-25, 9-25.
Overall, the team placed second out of six teams. Coaches Nancy Le, Steven Le, and Sarah McChesney were very proud of what their athletes were able to achieve in such a short amount of time.
“This is my second year coaching the Grade 10 girls. I think they’ve come a long way from when they started out last year with very little volleyball skills. They’ve won first place in ‘B’ zones last year and second place in ‘A’ zones this year. I think that is a huge victory in itself. I am honoured that I was able to help start up the ladies junior high school volleyball careers and most importantly, be called their coach. I am sad that I won’t be part of their team next year, but I am confident that they are going to be an even stronger team in their senior years,” Nancy Le, team coach, said.
“Aside from their volleyball skills, I think that the girls are all amazing A Cappella singers and that’s one of the best things about travelling with them. The friendships and memories created over the season were similar to my experience playing volleyball in high school, but I think this year has topped it, which is amazing.”