Repeating as a champion in any sport is a tough order.
The Victoria Volleyball Association Chargers 15-under girls team accomplished just that, capping their B.C. club championship tournament with a solid 25-14, 25-17 win over the Seaside Surf from White Rock in Saturday’s final.
The Chargers, with all but a couple players students at Spencer middle school, won the 14-U title last year and a bronze medal in the national championships at the Tradex Convention Centre in Abbotsford, site of last weekend’s victory. They’ll contest the 2015 club nationals in Calgary, May 14 to 16.
Head coach Mike Toakley says his players put “the pedal to the metal” after squeezing out a three-set semifinal win (25-21, 23-25, 15-12) over their provincial arch-rival, the Coquitlam Ducks.
“Right from the opening serve we were phenomenal,” he says. “Instead of an emotional letdown after such a tightly charged (semifinal) match, it seemed to lift them to another level. They were having fun and the pressure, for some reason, was entirely on Seaside.”
Led with the big hitting of power Savannah Purdy, who was named the tournament’s most valuable player, and the front court play of all-stars Hannah May on the right side and Erin Mutch at power, the Chargers were like a machine in the final, serving and passing well and attacking aggressively at the net, Toakley said.
The tournament also saw bench players such as Cerys Tutt fill in admirably in spots where starters were injured for stretches at a time, Toakley added.
“It speaks to how hard the girls practice and how athletically gifted they are.”
After finishing second in their pool at 2-1 and sweeping the Seaside Wahini in straight sets in a round of 16 match, the Chargers defeated BCO Black of Vancouver 26-24, 25-19 in the quarter-finals.