Any time you can leave the provincial championships having won as many sets as you lost, things are not all bad. When you accomplish this with a team making their first ever excursion to the world of OVA (Ontario Volleyball Association) competitive tournaments, all the better.
Coming off a silver medal performance at their last set of games in Vaughan, the Northern Chill 14U Boys took their first ever shot at the all-Ontario playdowns with a little extra giddy-up in their step.
That, however, was offset with the inevitable jitters, as the Sudbury crew dropped three straight on day one, beaten 25-5, 25-27, 13-15 by the Scorpions Evolution from Cambridge, 21-25, 20-25 by Sky Volley Sunshine from Windsor, and 25-20, 12-25, 10-15 by Pakmen Black – 13U from Mississauga.
Dusting themselves off for play the next morning in Kitchener-Waterloo, the Chill were 180 degrees better on Friday, knocking off Pegasus from Kingston (25-14, 25-22), the Georgetown Impact (25-17, 19-25, 15-8) and Waves Blue from Toronto (27-25, 25-20).
Hoping to go on a bit of a run on playoff Saturday, the locals were thwarted by the Waterloo Tigers Black, succumbing 25-22, 23-25, 14-16 in an absolute nail-biter. “The boys showed how much they developed individually, and as a team, at provincials,” noted head coach Bryan Welsh.
“It was obvious. The boys developed a true love for the game, and we could not be more proud of what they accomplished.”
Bringing together a roster that covered a range of athletes from grade six to grade nine, the 2018-2019 edition of the Northern Chill 14U Boys featured Quinn Bardell, Simon Lemieux, Alec Richard, Ashton Lachance, Jordan Schweyer, Nathan Robinson, Asher Kolari, Cameron Van Der Zyl, Zacharie LeBlanc, Logyn Bernard, Brady Rhéaume, James Welsh, coach Bryan Welsh and assistant coach James Schweyer.