Lord Tweedsmuir Panthers looked good early in the final game of the 4A Girls BC Secondary School Volleyball Provincial Championships, but ultimately fell to the defending champion Kelowna Owls.
The final was played Saturday evening (Nov. 30) at Langley Events Centre.
Early on, the Panthers leaped to a 14-4 lead in the first set before the Owls took flight, scoring 21 of the next 28 points to steal the match. They followed that up with 25-22 and 25-18 wins to secure the provincial championship, 3-0.
The Panthers couldn’t clip the Owls the way the Cloverdale girls had done earlier this season at the Red Serge Classic – the only previous time the two teams had met this year.
In Langley, Tweedsmuir’s Bailey Dorohoy was among First Team All-Stars for the tourney, while teammate Alysha Goundrey was given Second Team honours.
At the South Fraser championships, the Panthers – one of the province’s top teams all season – lost to Elgin Park, knocking them out of contention for first place in their zone. Tweedsmuir recovered to place third but subsequently found themselves seeded eighth for the 4A provincial finals tournament.
Early Saturday, the Panthers set up a final-game showdown with Kelowna later that night after beating the second-ranked Lord Byng Grey Ghosts 3-1 (25-22,19-25,25-8,25-19).
“You are never glad to get a loss but I’m glad it happened then and not this weekend,” Panthers coach Sara Corneil said after the win over Lord Byng.
“It is really nice being ranked among the top teams in the province, but it also puts a target on your back,” Corneil added. “When we lost the match to Elgin in the playoffs, it was a real reset that we have to pay attention to the details and take care of business on our side if we want to be successful in our provincial run.”
The top-ranked Owls beat Handsworth Royals to make the final against Tweedsmuir.
In other action at Langley Events Centre, South Surrey’s Earl Marriott Mariners won the B.C. triple-A boys volleyball crown for a second straight season after a 3-1 win over Kelowna Owls.
The Mariners dropped the first set before reversing the momentum and controlling play the rest of the way. The third set saw play lean heavily in the Mariners’ favour, with the South Surrey side leading by double digits for much of the set, before eventually winning by 14.
with file by Nick Greenizan