Sky U17s find gold in Edmonton

The U17 Sky Girls won gold in the Tier 3 Division 2 of the National Club Volleyball Championships

The Vernon U17 Sky Girls uncovered gold in the Tier 3 Division 2 of the National Club Volleyball Championships in Edmonton.

The Sky crew took a three-set tiebreaker 15-9 over Richmond’s Apex Volleyball club in a hot and muggy University of Alberta gymnasium.

“The girls played the best they played the whole weekend and the crowd was filled with parents, family and friends,” said Vernon coach Troy Lorenson.

The locals endured rough start on Day 1, going 0-3 to finish fourth in the preliminaries. In a new pool for the second day, the Sky girls started to get into the groove by winning their first match before dropping a pair. That record moved them into Tier 3 on Sunday,

Lorenson said the team questioned themselves in early matches but then pulled together.

“I knew the girls had it in them – like Shanda Hill said at our fundraiser – some time you just have to dig deeper – and they did – on the second day we lost Emily Dahl, one of our strongest hitters, to an severe ankle injury and we lost our setter Rachel Gareau to a concussion in a mid-air collision with Emily executing blocks – that hurt the team – but they charged on,” said Lorsenson.

Said team photographer Erin Hobkirk, after the final win: “I was so excited I almost threw my camera in the air – our whole team, including our amazing coach Troy Lorenson, team manager Shannon Weir, and of course the girls – all put their entire souls into this weekend.”

The Big Sky roster: Dahl, Gareau, Mariah Feist, Anica Haberstock, Kalli Hamilton-Gee, Allison Hobkirk, Abbey Hughes, Alexandra MacKinnon, Ella Oduro, Claire Oordt-Bosman, Kendel Rogers, Mya Weir.