Volleyball has come to an end in Ponoka and there won’t be a provincial title coming this year.
The senior Kings boys and Queens girls clubs from St. Augustine School wound up third at the 2A central Alberta zone playoffs on Nov. 18, while the Ponoka Secondary Campus senior girl Broncs just missed making the final at their zone playoff over the weekend.
For the Queens, they came in as the third seed having to get past Pigeon Lake Nov. 15 in a play-in game. Head coach Darren Josephison was happy with the season, just not really with the end result.
“We finished up with a match record of 44 wins, 16 losses and ended up with a medal on the weekend, just not the right colour to qualify for provincials,” he said.
“We lost a tight semifinal to David Thompson, who went on to beat Rimbey in the final, before we defeated Camrose’s Our Lady of Mount Pleasant Catholic in three sets for the bronze. We’ve actually had better win/loss records before, just not enough trips to provincials.”
The Kings were in Camrose for zones and also took away bronze, something head coach Justin Florean is proud of.
“The boys played extremely well,” he said, noting most of the matches were very close.
“Keep in mind, this program is only five years old and our seven Grade 12s have been its foundation, going from winning one game three seasons ago to two straight bronze medals at zones. I’m very proud of this team.”
And things are also set to get better for both teams, as the junior Queens and Kings both came home with the CWJAHAA district banners over the weekend.
While the boys needed a bit of work to win, the girls were as impressive in Sylvan Lake at the event as they had been all season.
Besides not losing a match, the team also came back from an 8-6 deficit in the last set in the final versus Rimbey and scoring nine of the next 11 points to win 15-10 and complete the perfect season — which included seven straight league match victories and eight straight tournament wins.
As for the Broncs who were in Sylvan Lake, it was the ending that came up somewhat short of their goal of making a fifth straight provincial championship tournament.
“We got beat up by Sylvan Lake in the opening set of our final round robin match, won the second and then won it with an unbelievable come back in the final set,” said Broncs head coach Ron Labrie.
The club was down 8-3 when the clubs changed sides in that third set, but stormed back to win 16-14 to lift them into second in their pool and a semi-final berth. Unfortunately, the Broncs were not up to the task and fell to Camrose.
“The girls were pumped after that last round robin win, but Camrose were strong on the serve against us and we just weren’t able to pass well enough,” he stated.
“We pretty much finished up where we started the season, but I thought the girls played their best in September and early October. Then we plateaued, and just couldn’t win those key matches down the stretch.”