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Tsunami snares silver medal

The Sunshine Coast Volleyball Club's U14 Tsunami picked up a silver medal at the 2004 provincial championships last weekend in Surrey.

The Sunshine Coast Volleyball Club's U14 Tsunami picked up a silver medal at the 2004 provincial championships last weekend in Surrey.

The tournament, held at the Pacific Academy, was the culmination of a long season of volleyball for a talented group of young girls from the Sunshine Coast.

The 16-team tournament started on Saturday morning with pool play. The first match of the day for Tsunami was against the Heathens, from the Victoria Volleyball Association.

Tsunami beat this team earlier in the season in a very close match, but the team felt confident going in.

Tsunami started slow in both sets of the match, but each time came from behind to win the match 25-18, 25-20.

Match two was against the Mid-Island Slammers from Brentwood Bay.

"They were a weaker team, but we took them far too lightly," said head coach Quinn Campbell. "Our team was very casual going in and played down to the Slammers level, but we managed to scrape out a three-set win after losing the first set."

The scores were 18-25, 25-15 and 15-13.

Tsunami regrouped for its last pool match, against the Lakers from the Focus Volleyball Club out of Langley, their B-team.

Playing their best volleyball of the day, Tsunami won the match in two-straight sets, 25-19, 25-22.

Tsunami finished first in its pool and got a bye into the quarter-final round of the playoffs, which started on Sunday. Tsunami went up against the Crush from the Big Kahuna Volleyball Club out of Burnaby.

"Again, we had a slow start to the morning and split the first two sets," Campbell added. "In the shortened third set, we played much better and won it convincingly."

The scores were 25-22, 20-25 and 15-8.

In the semi-final, Tsunami once again faced Heathens.

Tsunami continued its strong play from the third set of the quarter-final and cruised easily through the match, winning 25-16, 25-14. "This win was a big step forward for us because we had lost in the semi-finals of its past three tournaments," Campbell said.

Tsunami faced the Lasers, the A-team from the Focus Volleyball Club in the final.

Campbell said this was a strong team, coached by former Team Canada player Greg Russell.

"The Lasers had two huge players who were dominant at the net. They were both strong hitters and blocked almost everything we threw at them," he said. "During their front row rotations, we found it difficult to score and fell behind early. But when those players hit their back row rotations, we scored with ease.

The match was a seesaw battle all the way.

"The Lasers would pull ahead with their big players in the front, and we would fight our way back into the sets when they were in the back row," Campbell said. "Ultimately, we didn't score enough when we had our chances, and we lost both sets by scores of 25-22 and 25-20, settling for the silver medal."

Although the entire team played extremely well all weekend, Jennifer Brown and Jillian Saunders were recognized for their outstanding play, and both were selected to the tournament all-star team.

Tsunami had an excellent season overall with a 17-4 match record in tournaments, three-third place finishes and the second-place finish at the provincials.

"Throughout the season, this team consistently outworked their opponents with absolutely tenacious defence," Campbell said. "These girls put everything on the line to stop balls from hitting our side of the floor, which allowed us to beat a number of bigger and stronger attacking teams. When our offence catches up, this group could be unstoppable."