By Dale Cory
The Rams were no match for the Broncs in a turf war that took place on the volleyball court.
Ponoka Composite High School volleyball teams staged their Central Alberta High School Volleyball League home openers Sept. 22, and proved tough opponents for the visiting Lacombe Rams.
The Ponoka Broncs boys and girls teams easily won their best of five matches in three-straight games to even their records at 1-1 on the season.
Broncs boys take Lacombe in straight sets
In boys’ action, Ponoka won games by scores of 25-19, 25-18, 25-20.
“We came out hitting and passing well. It was all clicking. As volleyball goes — you have your moments where you fall apart, and then you bring it back together, and the guys were able to do that,” said Broncs co-coach Chris Noble after the victory over Lacombe. “It was a well-rounded team effort. The whole bench got in and played, and everybody did their part. As a unit, we performed well.”
Colin Horan, who starred at the power and right side positions, was named player of the match for Ponoka.
“He’s just a very well-rounded player. He’s one of the core players of the team, along with Matt Noble, Brandon Sterling and Jeremy Adcock,” says Noble. “Those guys have been the core of the team since their Grade 7 year. Hopefully this is the year they can put it all together.”
Out of 11 players on the Ponoka roster, nine are in their senior year, which means this is the time for the Broncs to put it all together and challenge for a provincial title.
“I’ve been with these boys since they were in Grade 7. They’ve come and gone, but now they’re all back in their Grade 12 year, and ready and eager to go. It’s their year again,” believes Noble. “Co-coach Mark Richter knows the technical part of it, and I like to think I know the heart-and-soul part of it. We do very well together.”
Broncs girls win in three-straight over Rams
After the Ponoka boys had finished off Lacombe, the girls took to the court, with the Broncs easily taking out Lacombe by scores of 25-18, 25-12, 25-19.
“I thought the girls came out with a lot of fire,” said head coach Joely Hanke after the win. “The girls played really hard at the Lethbridge tournament, so I think they understood the level of play they wanted to start with against Lacombe, and were not going to go down to anyone’s level.”
Emily Jensen was named player of the match for Ponoka. Hanke has high words of praise Jensen
“I feel Emily is one of the strongest girls in her age group in Alberta,” insists Hanke, whose squad lost in Camrose to open the season. “She passed phenomenally.”
The Broncs girls’ volleyball team, which lost six Grade 12 players last year, is a mix of five seniors and seven Grade 11 players in 2010-2011.
“We’re kind of in a rebuilding year. The good thing is, we have really strong Grade 11s. Our depth goes way into our bench,” says Hanke, whose expectations are high. “They know I expect a crapload of tough work. I’m probably one of the hardest people in the world to impress. I expect great things from them, and they’ve improved a heck of a lot in the last couple of weeks.”
Next up for the Broncos… Ponoka teams head to Stettler Sept. 30, and return to PCHS to face Wetaskiwin Oct. 5 and Notre Dame Oct. 7.