The Carihi Junior girls volleyball team (grades 9 and 10), coached by Bruce Stewart and Mark Tazumi, competed at the North Island tournament on Nov. 11 and 12 at Mark Isfeld Secondary School.
Dubbed the “Comeback Kids” by their parents, the team often started their sets trailing their opponents and slowly narrowed the margin. Starting out ranked 7th out of eight teams, the girls dug deep and played well to grab a great berth for the Saturday playoffs.
The first game against Highland started slowly with a loss in the first set 9-25. The girls rallied and won the second with an exciting finish of 26-24 forcing a third set to break the tie. Carihi kept the momentum going to win the tiebreaker 15-12.
The second game was against the top ranked team, Dover Bay, who went on to win the entire tournament. Carihi played strong, but was unable to clinch a win with losses of 14-25 and 17-25.
The final game versus Port Alberni was for the third and fourth place, with only the top three teams moving on to the Islands tournament this week. After an initial loss in the first set (20-25), Carihi buckled down to win an important second set that had the crowd on the edge of their seats the entire time. They won 25-22 and forced the crucial tiebreaker.
The team had an amazing third set, beating Port Alberni 15-4 and clinching third place overall as well as their spot at the Islands. They will play against the other top 11 Vancouver Island teams this Friday and Saturday at Timberline Secondary school in hopes of making the Provincials.