Notre Dame Cougars senior girls volleyball player Jade Bussard spikes a ball past a pair of Hunting Hills blockers on Wednesday night. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate staff)

Notre Dame Cougars senior girls volleyball eager for new season

As a team, coming together has been a key development for the Notre Dame Cougars senior girls volleyball team.

With Six Grade 12s, five Grade 11s and one Grade 10, head coach Dana Woroniuk has been thrilled so far with how the team has bonded and built a solid foundation for success.

“Offensively we have some girls that played some high-level ball in the last year and they’re bringing that experience to the team,” Woroniuk said.

“They’ve shown great leadership and so far I couldn’t be more pleased. Our younger girls are just eager to follow along and do their part. Everyone is buying into their role.”

Ali Greenshields, Sarah Scrase, Jade Bussard and Sam Gagnon will be the leaders for the Cougars this season and hope to avenge a loss to Lindsay Thurber at provincials that led to a sixth place finish last year.

Woroniuk said the goal every year is to make it to provincials and especially after getting the second bid last season, she hopes to see her team return again.

“The goal is always to win zones. That’s always there, that’s the carrot at the end of the season. We know we have two strong high schools that we have to defeat in order to do that. We’d love to go to provincials,” she said.

“They of course would love to win that championship, just like every other team in the city. It’s what makes it an exciting season. When we have really good volleyball, it makes better volleyball players.”

The head coach expects the identity of her team to be their effectiveness on the offensive side of the ball, she said with a few strong returning hitters that part of the game will likely be a strong point. Defence will really be where they need to improve if they hope to be the top team in the zone.

“We have strong offensive girls on our team. One thing we’ll have to continue working on is some of our defence and that first contact. Those are some of our goals,” Woroniuk said.

Former Notre Dame student Kirsten Sorensen, who played for the RDC Queens is also helping out behind the bench this season and Woroniuk believes she’ll be a huge help.

The Cougars will start the regular season on Oct. 18 against Hunting Hills.

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