The Central Alberta Queens Volleyball Club U17 Girls earned a gold medal at the Volleyball Canada Nationals in Edmonton on Tuesday. (Contributed Photo)

Central Alberta Queens U17 girls win gold at Nationals

Queens went undefeated through to the Tier 1 Final victory

The Central Alberta Queens U17 Girls were crowned volleyball royalty this week at the Volleyball Canada National Championships in Edmonton.

The Queens rolled through the competition at the Saville Centre over three days. They had a sweep in round robin, another three straight match wins in the power pool before winning another three en route to the gold medal in Division 2 Tuesday afternoon.

They knocked off the South Peace Volleyball Club Blizzard in two sets (26-24, 25-16) to earn the Tier 1 Championship victory.

“Solid team affair,” Queens head coach Jeff Anderson said.

“Wasn’t that we were relying on one position to get us through… But, we were doing a really good job as a team to continue to be dynamic. That was our true foundation for success. Getting that first pass so we could run a dynamic offence, so teams couldn’t key on our left side. That’s a credit to the whole group to get that job done.”

Anderson said in the final, after falling behind 6-0 in the first set, it took some motivation to his team back on track. He issued a challenge to his group during a timeout that appeared to resonate with them as they climbed back into the match.

“As a coach, it makes your heart so happy,” said Anderson of the response by his team.

(I told them) you gotta dig down deep. It’s right there in your belly. You have the fire burning in your belly and do you want to leave today, after these three long days with a silver medal?

“Then keep doing what you’re doing. If not, we’re going to start doing the little things and taking it one point at a time like we always do and turn it around.”

Team members included Taylor Fuller, Chenee Lehman, Kennedy Shooter, Natalie Vega, Searra Schoepfner, Jaiden Ferguson, Kaitlyn Bowe, Riley de Wit, Jamie Lalor and Jade Sinnamon.

The Queens were in Division 2 at nationals after a less than stellar showing at provincials earlier this month. Division 2 is the second best group of 32 U17 girls volleyball club teams in Canada. Anderson said that made them more determined than ever to come away with gold at Nationals.

Anderson added that after such a successful tournament, many of his players were approached about their future plans in volleyball.

“All those girls have been approached in some manner or form about what they want to do in two years,” he said.

“That makes me excited as well that they have options that they can do with their education depending on what they want to do and play.”

He noted watching the team come together over the course of six months this season was a long journey and he was proud to see his entire starting lineup emerge as leaders. Those experiences throughout the year– the highs and lows will serve them well in the future.

“The real leadership on the team– my entire starting group are incredible leaders that are going to go back to their schools and be rock stars again and hopefully come back for the U18 season and continue on their volleyball journey,” Anderson said.

Email sports tips to Byron Hackett

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Cannabis facility proposed for Clearwater County

Cannabis production facility proposed south of Caroline would produce 30,000 kg of cannabis a year

Two Central Alberta country singers are finalists in career-launching contest

They will attend music industry ‘boot camp’ this summer

Transit changes to aid Burman University students

An additional evening trip and student bus passes to be in place by fall

WATCH: Province, Maskwacis Cree Nations sign educational agreement

Funding and support will help the First Nations develop a Cree-based curriculum

WATCH: Red Deer celebrates World Refugee Day

The Central Alberta Refugee Effort hosted multiple events around Red Deer Wednesday

New Jersey Devils forward Taylor Hall wins Hart Trophy as NHL MVP

LAS VEGAS — Taylor Hall has won the Hart Trophy as the… Continue reading

Red Deer high school student psyched for SHAD

Lindsay Thurber’s Kaden Nivens will head to Newfoundland for the annual program in July

Red Deer College team tackles lack of Indigneous inclusion in research projects

A local college research team has completed a lengthy project examining the… Continue reading

Officials make case against parents accused of child abuse

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — Prosecutors made their case Wednesday against a Southern California… Continue reading

Manitoba educational assistant sentenced to 3 1/5 years for sex with student

WINNIPEG — A former educational assistant in Winnipeg has been sentenced to… Continue reading

Conservatives can ‘win anywhere,’ Scheer says in welcoming Richard Martel

OTTAWA — Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer welcomed the newest member of his… Continue reading

Fans grieve as detectives search for XXXTentacion’s killers

DEERFIELD BEACH, Fla. — For hours, the fans came in a steady… Continue reading

Canadian steel not a national security threat on its own: US commerce secretary

OTTAWA — The U.S. commerce secretary says Canada is not a national… Continue reading

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month