The home girls pulled off the upset, and Oceanside will have two teams in the mix at this week’s North Island finals.
In action at Ballenas Secondary School as hosts of the eight-team junior girls Volleyball district playdowns looking for one of the four berths up for grabs to their North Island championships this weekend, the Whalers won the one they needed to and Kwalikum’s Kondors carved out a silver for second.
KSS went into the tournament ranked third based on the 12-team District League regular season, Ballenas fifth.
Both teams’ coaches commented on the improved play of their teams.
The Kondors won four of their first five games then lost to the Dolphins, unbeaten and dominating the mid-Island this year, in the final.
The Whalers biggest win of the season so far came Saturday morning when they knocked off the Spartans of Cedar to extend their season. The match went three sets (first two to 25) with the Whalers finishing strong and winning the third set 15-11.
“It was a really good game,” one Kondor mom relayed outside the gym later that day. “Ballenas worked hard ...they deserved it.”
“The girls were missing a very good player (Kyla Squire) but they rose above and played excellent as a team. They were pumped,” confirmed Whalers’ skipper Steve Dorsay. “It was great.”
KSS coach Jim Pearce said he was pleased with the play of his team.
“The key for us was being way more consistent we managed to cut down on the errors. They’re playing a lot better ...we’re peaking at the right time”
The Kondors battled but came up short against unbeaten powerhouse Dover Bay in the tournament final.
Adding to the atmosphere was Saturday afternoon’s game between the Whalers and Kondors, which Ballenas took in two.
The Kondors and Whalers are in Courtenay this weekend for their eight-team junior girls North Island finals.
IN OTHER NEWS
KSS will be hosting the AA Sr. Girls North Island volleyball championships Friday and Saturday. First game is 1-1:30 p.m. Friday, playoffs on Saturday.
BACK AT BALLENAS the AAA Sr. Girls Whalers continue to improve as they ramp up for their playoffs.
The Whaler girls are currently ranked third on the Island with NDSS sitting 2nd and Campbell River’s Timberline first in B.C.
The Whalers are coming off a fifth place finish at Timberline’s tourney, and the squad said head coach John Philip “showed considerable improvement in our quarterfinal match against NDSS. We played very well in the match losing 25-27, 18-25,” he said, pointing out “we have not beaten NDSS in the past two seasons.
Megan Bell led the team in that game with eight kills and Mariah St. Pierre had seven. Nicole Lublinkoff had three blocks.
“We were so close,” said Philip. “It was the best we have played all season, the team is positive about the effort in defeat and feel if we can eliminate some of the mistakes we have a good chance.”
The Whalers are in Nanaimo at Wellington Secondary Friday Saturday for their AAA North Islands looking to grab a berth in the Island finals.
The senior girls finished fourth last weekend in White Rock taking the Seaquam Seahawks, ranked second in BC, to three sets.