The Timberline Senior Girls Volleyball Team, seeded ninth at the AAA provincial championships, returned home with an impressive sixth place finish.
“Our goal was to place in the top eight,” said Head Coach Terry Philp. “Anytime you can place higher than your goal it is a huge success. In addition to this great finish, the Wolves were named the Most Sportsmanlike Team of the B.C. Championships. We were not a top seed in the championship. This allowed us to relax and play without pressure.
“I told the girls to…be that happy team that enjoys every experience. We would thank the volunteers, congratulate our opponents and play with passion. We did just that and were the talk of the tournament. The other coaches were so impressed at the fact that our team had so many 10’s and 11’s and only two Grade 12’s. They all told me that we would be the team to beat in the next two years. We really pushed the big schools and came within two points of beating the eventual gold medalists, Little Flower Academy of Vancouver, in pool play.”
One of the main highlights of the tournament was winning the first play-off match against Sentinal (North Vancouver) three games to one. This meant the Wolves had reached its goal of top eight. That win pitt the team against the number one seed, Seaquam(Delta), a team including 6’3” Junior Team Canada player, Nicola Laniuk. Seaquam was also the defending B.C. Champions.
“Though we lost, we really pushed them,” Philp said. “Their coach was very complimentary and said our out-of-system play was amazing. We wok on that a lot and it showed. He also complimented our captain, Vanessa Schulz, saying she was the best “small” power hitter he had seen.”
Losing to Seaquam meant the Wolves would play its nemesis, Ballenas – the team that beat Timberline in the semi-finals of both the North Island and Island championships and were the number five seed.
“We came out strong, stuck to our game plan and never looked back, beating Ballenas 25-16; 25-21,” Philp said. “This meant sixth place was now in our hands. We had worked so hard to beat Ballenas all year and were getting closer and closer. I told the girls we would eventually beat them, when the time was right, and we did. It was a great moment for the team. The entire team worked hard this season and all deserve a tremendous amount of credit for their commitment and dedication.” Sarah Chase, Grade 10, was named to the first All-star team.