A battle royale took place on the court and St. Augustine’s senior volleyball squads were up to the task.
The Queens senior girls managed a comeback five-set victory Sept. 21 and the Kings senior boys started slow, but finished strong in a four-set win as the teams played host to Pigeon Lake.
The girls were strong in taking the first set 25-13 then faltered in losing the second 23-25. They bounced back to take the third 25-19, only to lose the fourth by the same score. That forced a deciding fifth set, where the Queens fell behind 8-0 and came back to win 20-18 after surviving a couple of match points.
Queens head coach Darren Josephison was pleased to see the win, but certainly had some anxiety throughout.
“It was a wild one in what should have been a match won in three sets, instead saw us have to make a miraculous comeback in the fifth set,” Josephison explained.
“At times the girls played great with strong hitting, passing and defence. At other times, they were slow to react, unwilling to communicate and work hard enough. In short, we are struggling with consistency of effort and execution early in the season. Even though we are 2-0, we expect and need our game to get better.”
That’s especially important over the next two weeks as they face two of the top teams in the league, starting with tonight in Rocky Mountain House against St. Dominic’s followed next week with a match in Rimbey.
“Those two matches will go a long way in determining the top three places in the league. Victories in these two matches would go a long way in securing a playoff spot in November,” he added.
For the Kings, an opening set 19-25 loss must have woken them up as the boys powered through to win the next three sets 25-13, 25-22, 25-18 for their first victory of the season.
“Our focus was to play with energy from start to finish and play as a unit,” said head coach Justin Florean.
“The team did this very well and were rewarded. We are a very young program, but the boys are skilled and determined. That was proved that night and while we still have a long ways to go, I’m very proud of the progress we have made in such a short time.”
Smash hits: The Queens were also in Bawlf on the weekend and came away with their second straight top three tournament finish, bowing out to the host club in the semi-finals. The girls ended up second in their six-team pool, then kept up the strong showing by defeating St. Thomas Aquinas from Spruce Grove — last year’s 1A provincial champs — in the quarter finals.