Knowing the ins and outs
The Mount Royal Cougar’s women’s volleyball team was looking for their third straight Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference championships as they hosted the final eight teams in the province from Feb. 27 to Mar. 1. Mount Royal came up short though, placing fourth after battling hard on Kenyon Court.
“Our youth decided to show up at the wrong time,” said Sandra Lamb, head coach of the women’s volleyball team about the fourth place finish.
“We have nine rookies this year and some of the key players are coming back. You just hope that they learn and that they don’t want to be in that situation ever again.”
The Cougars started off the weekend with a win in three sets over the King’s University College Eagles. A win in their next game against the Grant MacEwan Griffins would have sent them to the gold medal game. The Cougars however lost three straight sets to the Griffins. The bronze medal game saw the Cougars lose to the Grande Prairie Wolves.
“We won the third game and we were battling in the fourth and a couple of miscommunications and misplays ended up being a loss for us. We have to look at it as a learning experience,” said Lamb. She said the highlights of the weekend were that the team really stuck together and played really solid. The girls that came off the bench to play in the tournament also did a good job said Lamb. She highlighted Christina Coleman and Andrea Price as two girls who stood out.
“Christine Coleman, our middle, had a really good weekend. She was solid and a true fighter for us. Andrea Price stepped up. She got a little bit of an opportunity in the semifinals, but worked harder in the bronze medal match. Kyle Henry, events and communications coordinator for Cougars Athletics said that Lamb had the girls prepared for this tournament.
“She [Lamb] has been here for over 10 years, she really knows the ins and outs of volleyball and Mount Royal,” he said. “They’ve been having a great season and been doing it with a lot of younger players. Everyone is definitely impressed, but it doesn’t come as a surprise when you have a coach that good.”
The host school for the final eight tournament is based on the team who places first place in either the south or north division. This year the honour was awarded to Mount Royal for placing first in the south division. Next year, the first place team in the north after the first half of the season will host the final eight teams, as it switches between the two divisions.
“We had a lot of people coming through the facilities and campus here, so that’s always great for us. People are getting to see where we play and how nice the campus is,” said Henry. “It is nice to be able to host it here and have the home crowd behind you and their parents and friends.”