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Scorpions earn 11th place at provincials

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An 11th-place finish at the provincial championships capped off a successful season for the GISS senior boys volleyball team.

The Scorpions started the tournament in Langley last Wednesday right where they left off at the north island and island championships with a perfect 3-0 record on the first day of competition. The boys beat teams from WL Seaton, Pacific Christian and Charles Tupper schools.

According to coach Kellie Booth, the players began the second day of the tournament with words of encouragement via live video conference from GISS volleyball program alumni and professional volleyball player Casey Knight from his team’s training facility in Greece. Then the team arrived at their 9 a.m. Langley Events Centre game to find alumni and recently retired professional volleyball player Chris Howe sitting on their bench.

“The boys were feeling the love and support, but unfortunately were not able to overcome their nerves and a strong Mennonite Educational Institute Eagles team and lost the match,” said Booth.

The team regrouped and defeated the Gryphons from Smithers in their 4:30 p.m. match Thursday. 

Friday’s 1 p.m. contest pitted GISS against Langley Fundamental. In a back and forth match the Scorpions were unable to sustain their dominant play from the first day and fell to the Fraser Valley team to finish the tournament.

“We had a dream season,” said Booth. “Co-coach Cole Wrigley and I are very proud of the boys and their accomplishments.”

Booth said the team will make another run at provincials with returning Grade 11 players Jared Farias, Logan Wenzel, Jeff Gray, Nicholas Van Bakel, Liam McGuire and Yugo Uemaru, who gained valuable experience this year. 

“We will miss Sander Keil, Obleo Demandre, Stuart Hambrook, Atum Beckett, Noah Jacobsen and Max Temmel, who will all graduate in June and join the ranks of GISS volleyball alumni,” she said.

“The team and coaching staff would like to thank parents, community members, community organizations and local businesses for their help and support throughout the season.”

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