The Fulton Maroons fell to a familiar foe as they struck silver at the Thompson Rivers University junior boys volleyball tournament last weekend in Kamloops.
The Maroons fell 23-25, 23-25 to the defending B.C. champion MEI Eagles of Abbotsford in Saturday’s gold-medal game, the second time they have met in a final.
“We are getting so close to a win against them,” said head coach Richard Bedard. “We are glad to know we are up there as one of the top teams in the province. This is our third final in as many tournaments, so we’re really proud of the boys.”
In pool play, Fulton stopped the Dr. Knox Falcons of Kelowna, 25-10, 25-17, Pen-Hi Lakers of Penticton, 25-17, 25-15 and the D.P. Todd Trojans of Prince George, 25-13, 25-22.
In the final 16, the Maroons swept the Duchess Park Condors of Prince George, 25-12, 25-18, and then bounced Elgin Park Orcas of Surrey, 25-12, 20-25, 15-9, in the quarters. They swamped the Pacific Academy Breakers of Surrey in the semis, 25-19, 25-23.
Fulton got strong, consistent play from tournament all-star Danny Aspenlieder with support in offensive power from Ryan Doerges, Noah Alleyne, and Kurtis Banks. Landon Currie and Bryn Bedard continued to dominate in digs and setting. Middle Kobe Romanovitch was solid in his blocking game against MEI. The Maroons will play in the MEI tournament this weekend in Abbotsford.
Fulton is hosting the North Zone junior boys championships Thursday, Nov. 7, starting at 4 p.m.
In senior boys tournament action, the shorthanded Vernon Panthers went 2-4 at the KSS Best of the West last weekend in Kelowna.
With just six players, including two junior call-ups, the Panthers pushed the George Elliot Coyotes of Lake Country to three sets, falling 25-8, 23-35, 8-15 in their opening match. Vernon got big hits from Shelby Hartwig, Brayden Damini and Landon Matties.
VSS rebounded by bouncing the Selkirk Storm, 25-17 and 25-19, with incredible setting from Nolan Wiens and strong plays from Jason Reich and huge blocks from Hartwig and call-up Eric Embleton.
Vernon dominated their third game against the Enver Creek Cougars of Surrey, taking two quick sets, 25-11 and 25-12, with more big hits from Damini and Matties.
The Pathers’ run ended against the Earl Marriott Mariners of Surrey as they fell 23-25, 9-25. Embleton supported the Cats with fantastic serves, while Hartwig, Damini and Matties had great blocks and hits.
Vernon finished with two losses Saturday, starting with a 19-25, 22-25 decision to Spruce Grove. They finished with a 21-25, 22-25 loss to the David Thompson Trojans of Vancouver.