The L.V. Rogers Bombers girls’ volleyball team downed Trail’s J.L. Crowe Hawks in straight sets to book a spot in the upcoming B.C. High School AAA Provincial Championship.
Coming into the Thursday afternoon match in Nelson, the LVR seniors were the favoured team and got off to a 6-0 lead with strong serving by Antonia Liamboeck.
After an early timeout, the Hawks got a grip on their play and forged back to make the first set the most exciting game of the match. The Bombers eventually closed out the opening set 25-22.
“We came out a little nervous,” said Bombers coach Jennifer Kidd. “That’s natural before a home crowd, but the girls figured it out. It’s important to set the tone with that first game and we eventually accomplished that.”
Buoyed by their success in the first game, the pesky Hawks jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the second set and kept it close for most of the first half. Solid play by middle hitter Bailey Stefani and setter Miriam Grimm fuelled the Bombers in the second half of the set that ended 25-17 in favour of the home team.
The third set was never in doubt for the Bombers who took it 25-16 to earn the victory in the match and the West Kootenay title.
“It wasn’t the best volleyball we have played this season, but it was enough to get it done,” said Kidd. “We have a some things to work on before provincials, but I’m proud of these ladies for showing they are the best in the West Kootenay.”
The Bombers were dominant in regional play this season, going undefeated in both exhibition and tournament games against teams from the West Kootenay and Boundary.
The squad captured tournament titles at Mount Sentinel’s Kootenay Classic, Trail’s Block Party and in Salmon Arm.
The provincials take place in Richmond, Nov. 29 to Dec. 1, where the competition will be stiff.
“It’s a whole different level of play at the provincials,” said Kidd. “We need to be realistic, but we have a good team this year and I’m excited to see how these players can compete at the highest level.”
The Bombers finished 12th at the 2016 provincials.