Three Ponoka volleyball players heading to 2018 Alberta Winter Games

Ponoka-based Central Rage Volleyball showing its talent with selections

Autumn Roos, is one of three Ponoka athletes heading to the 2018 Alberta Winter Games in the Zone 4 volleyball team. Photos by Jordie Dwyer

In a sport where individual skill must be combined within a cohesive team, it’s unusual for a small rural squad to send multiple players to an elite all-star competition.

The Ponoka-based U15 Central Rage female volleyball club will see three of its players — Cassandra Klinger, Autumn Roos and Kayla Vreugdenhil — part of the Zone 4 team at the Alberta Winter Games that will run in Fort McMurray from Feb. 16 to 19.

None of the three girls really expected to be named to the team, but anticipate this to be one of the biggest events of their young volleyball lives.

“I didn’t even hear about the tryouts until right before and to make it is pretty exciting,” said the 14-year-old Vreugdenhil.

“(This team) is totally different and it’s been extremely busy with two times the practices now, but that also means more touches which helps to get us ready.”

Roos, also 14, didn’t expect to get the call saying she made the team.

“It’s really amazing and it’s been fun with all of the new experiences so far,” she said, adding there were more than 70 players at the tryouts.

“It’s a different level of play. It’s going to be more intense, closer matches with a lot of excitement.”

For Klinger, she was able to choose what sport to go after to get to the games. Not only is the 14-year-old among the top volleyball players in the province, but she was ranked among one of the best female hockey players in the region and was among the small group of invitees to the zone camp last month.

“I decided to go with volleyball simply because of my interest in the sport and the improvements I’ve made. This event will come with higher intensity and skill, which will make it really interesting,” she said.

There was one point all three girls made though and that was having their teammates going with them will certainly help in a few different ways.

“It’s very nice that we are not going there alone and that we know what each other can do and how we play,” said Roos.

Klinger added, “Having all of us there will make things more comfortable, since we play together and know what each of us can do, but it’s also been great getting to know some new teammates.”

The three players were named to the squad back in December and Rage head coach Tammy Emes wasn’t surprised about how the tryouts turned out.

“I knew there would be at least three and thought there could have been a fourth named to the team,” she said.

“All of the girls have a great attitude and work really hard. But, they are part of a great group who all celebrated these girls making the club and their successes. These girls are good team players and will do really well.”


Cassandra Klinger is the second Ponoka athlete. She chose volleyball over hockey for the Alberta Winter Games.

Kayla Vreugdenhil is the third Ponoka athlete from the Central Alberta Rage volleyball team competing in the winter games.

Just Posted

Country Gardens owner Carmen Sim invited to international horticultural show

Located between Ponoka and Bashaw, the greenhouse owner is taking in a lifetime trip

PHOTOS: Ice racing at Mulhurst Bay at Pigeon Lake

Results of the ice racing event at Pigeon Lake

Maskwacis RCMP lay charges from home invasion

Four charged in alleged invasion using knives and gun on Samson Cree Nation - three injured

UPDATE: Highway 2 lanes were closed due to milk truck fire near Millet

A southbound truck hauling milk and cartons collided with a bridge

Ponoka Airport taxiway improvement costs overrun

The $328,000 project increased to $359,000, gravel cited as main reason for the increase

WATCH: Ponoka residents enjoy first skate on ice path

A community initiative helped create a skate path for families in Ponoka.

Bad timing: Shutdown spoils Trump’s one-year festivities

Trump spends day trying to hash out a deal with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer

Las Vegas shooter acted alone, exact motive still undetermined: Sheriff

Stephen Paddock was behind the gunfire that killed 58 people including two Canadians

Botox, bomb shelters, and the blues: one year into Trump presidency

A look into life in Washington since Trump’s inauguration

Suspected Toronto serial killer targeting gay community arrested

A 66-year-old man is charged with first-degree murder in disappearance of two Toronto men

Barenaked Ladies, Steven Page, to be inducted into Canadian Music Hall of Fame

Canadian band to get top honours at 2018 JUNO Awards

B.C. out of the running for Amazon’s next headquarters

Toronto is the only Canadian city left in the running despite the province backing Metro Vancouver’s bid for new Amazon headquarters

Post interest rate hike debt tips

What to do about your debt and mortgages after the interest rate hike

Foreign workers sleeping in Alberta Burger King basement

Alberta Health Services said its inspectors found foreign workers sleeping in the basement of the Lethbridge restaurant

Most Read