Jr. boys spikers win consolation title in Kenora
Although it was just a pre-season tournament, the smiles were easy to see on the members of the Muskie junior boys volleyball team on Monday at the Fort High gym, as they continued to hoist up the consolation side trophy that they earned over the weekend at a tournament in Kenora.
After finishing pool play with an overall record of 6-4, the black-and-gold faced off against the Dryden Gold team in the finals, which they won three sets to two in a tightly contested affair.
“This weekend saw us play a lot of games at the start of a season, and that was really important for us as it gave us to chance to work through the processes of a game and with the court positions, which is a key for the grade nine players.
“We also ran a 5-1 system this weekend, which is one setter and five hitters, so we were also introducing that aspect of the game to the guys,” he added.
The junior squad will now have a little over a week to get ready for their 2012 NorWOSSA season opener, which will take place on their home court against the Dryden Eagles at 12 p.m. on Tuesday.
“Things went really quickly for us last week after we picked the team as we had only three practices before the tournament, so a lot of our positioning work was done on the fly in Kenora,” Gibson noted.
“So this week, we are really going to pushing that aspect of things, and I also saw that there was a lot of time spent watching the ball when the guys weren’t actively involved in the play, so the off-the-ball movement is something else that we are really going to be focussing on in practice.
“Plus, there were some individual things that we will be targeting on in our drills,” he added.
Meanwhile, the senior boys’ squad is currently gearing up for their first tournament in Kenora this weekend, as they will hit the court for the first time on Friday afternoon against the host St. Thomas Aquinas Saints.
“This will be more of a learning weekend for us,” head coach Alison Hyatt explained.
“I’m hoping to try everyone in a number of different positions and get the team working well together to that they can get used to each other out on the court,” she added.
A total of 13 players make up the black-and-gold roster in the senior ranks this year heading into Tuesday’s season opener at home against the Eagles at 1:30 p.m., though Connor McManaman is serving as an assistant to Hyatt as he is out of action with a broken leg.
“I was hoping to be a little bit farther along than we are right now, but we’ve had some people sick and busy with other things early on in the practices,” Hyatt noted.
“So right now, we’ve been really focussing on our positions and getting everyone working together, in addition to working out the kinks before we get started,” she added.