ORILLIA SUNS 16U APEX
Nov. 24 was the start of the Ontario Volleyball Association season for many teams across the province, and the Orillia Suns 16U Apex team was no exception.
Hosted at St. Benedict’s Catholic Secondary School in Sudbury, this tournament was the first time all 12 team members had shared the court so far this season. The team was experiencing transitions in these matches, as they welcome new players this season and work different setters into the game.
The Suns began their round-robin matches with a game against the strong Barrie Elites Black team, losing the first set 25 - 14, and the second 25 - 16. This was tough competition for the Suns however, as the Elites would go on to win gold in the tournament later in the day.
The girls faced the 15U Vision team from North Bay next, who also proved themselves strong opponents, resulting in a 25 - 14 loss for the Suns in the first set, and a 25 - 18 loss in the second.
The first place team out of Pool B, Vision’s 16U team were next to play the Suns in a much closer match, only beating Orillia to end the crossover game by 6 points in the first set and 3 in the second.
The Suns had found their rhythm by this point in the tournament, shown in a convincing win in their first set against Georgian Bay Vista, with a final score of 25 - 13.
Vista won the second set of the game by 4 points, taking the match to a tiebreaking set, where the Suns were ultimately conquered 15 - 8 despite putting up a strong fight in their final match.
Despite a challenging start to the season, a tremendous effort was seen from all 12 members of the Apex team. Coach Kris Parnham and assistant coach Elyssa Duncan saw strong serving from Emily Laver - Shareski and Julianna Babicki, as well as a sustained left side attack from Olivia Hughes and Emily Laver - Shareski.
The team is practising hard for and looking forward to their next tournament in January.