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Dawson Creek senior girls volleyball team comes home with bronze from zones

Club season starts in January.
Left to right back row Trish Morgan, Jadynn Linley, Braelin Wilson, Alana Brett, Sofia Clerk. Front row, left to right Andalyn Tryon, Aili Arnold & Maya Morgan.

The Dawson Creek Secondary School (DCSS) senior girls volleyball team is coming home with a bronze medal from the AAA Northern Zones Volleyball championships this past weekend. 

The team of seven players travelled to Prince George to compete against four other AAA teams from Prince George and Quesnel vying for one of two berths to AAA girls volleyball provincials in Lake Country.  Although the team didn’t make it into the final, which would have earned them the opportunity to attend provincials, bringing home the bronze meant they met their weekend goal of coming home with a medal. 

As a result of some injuries, the team travelled to Prince George with only seven players which meant that every player had to play every match and every set with no substitutions.  Most other teams had 10 to 14 players per team and were able to keep their starting lineup fresh, by playing a variety of players depending on their matches.  That wasn’t the case for DCSS who had to grind through every match with their seven players. 

After round-robin play on Friday and Saturday morning, the team finished 3rd in the round-robin play beating Correlieu Secondary in three sets and Prince George Secondary in two sets, but falling to College Heights and Duchess Park both in two sets.  “Coming in 3rd in the round-robin was really important for us, because it meant that we would have an automatic bye into the semi-final against the 2nd place team in the round-robin. We knew that Saturday was going to be a big, long day and with a team of only seven we know that pushing through exhaustion was going to be a factor in our success,” said head coach Trish Morgan.

DCSS played Duchess Park, one of the top-ranked teams in BC, in the semi-final but lost after four tough sets. “Duchess Park is a very strong team and it was huge accomplishment for us to take a set off of them in the semi-final,” said coach Trish. “We knew after that match we had to set aside our disappointment, rest and refocus on the bronze medal match ahead of us. This match would be the last high school match for our seniors, Andalyn Tryon and Alana Brett, and we wanted to finish with a medal for them.”

The bronze medal match saw DCSS matched up against Correlieu Secondary, who pushed College Heights also to four sets in their semi-final match. Although DCSS started slow in the match, dropping the first set to Correlieu, they picked up the pace in the second set winning it 25-18.  The third and deciding set saw the teams closely matched, but DCSS eventually prevailed winning it 19-17 to win the bronze medal.

Power hitter, Anadalyn Tryon, and libero, Maya Morgan, were chosen by the host school, College Heights, as 2nd team all-stars.  “Andy was a huge leader in our offence and one of the best outside hitters in the tournament.  Maya also had a really good semi-final match against hard-hitting Duchess Park Secondary and a great bronze medal match against Corrielieu,” said coach Trish Morgan.

“I feel really fortunate to have the opportunity to coach this amazing group of young women.  Each player gave maximum effort through the whole tournament and despite being exhausted going into the bronze medal match, they put that aside and pulled out the win in honour of their graduating teammates,” explained coach Trish, “At one point in the match when we were down a few points and we called a time-out to refocus and one of our players, Sofia Clerk, looked at the rest of team and said, “we need to do this for Andy and Alana, it’s their last high school game and we need to win it for them!”, and that’s exactly what they did.  They played for each other and lifted each other up even when they were down.” 

“Jadynn Linely lead our offence through the weekend and was arguably one of the best setters in the tournament.  She has great hands and decision making and is also a very well-rounded player. Alana Brett, middle blocker, was a force at the net with strong blocking and quick attacking throughout the tournament. Braelin Wilson, our other middle blocker, got us some key points with her blocking and strong serving. Sofia Clerk, power hitter, was very strong defensively in the back court and made some great attacking decisions to turn the play around when we were down.  And Aili Arnold, our right side player, was strong in serve receive all weekend and her jump serving earned us a lot of key points.”

Many of the DCCS Sr Girls players will now take a well-needed rest before focusing their sights on the club season starting in January. 

Season highlights include a Silver medal from the Spirit River Regional Academy Ice Breaker Tournament, Gold medal banner division 2 from Howler’s Cup, Grande Prairie, Silver medal at the DCSS Sr Girls Invitational, and a Bronze medal from the AAA Girls Volleyball Northern Zone Championship