Athletics Review: Nov 16, 2009

Junior Girls Volleyball
The Junior girls volleyball team played their best volleyball of the season in one of the most closely-matched city championships in history, winning silver and securing a berth at Island Championships. It is only the second time in SMUS history that our Junior girls team has made Island playoffs. The team played outstanding, gutsy volleyball the entire weekend, showing stamina and courage in consistently close matches.

In pool play on Friday, the competition was fierce. SMUS played Claremont, Reynolds, and Mt. Doug. SMUS split their first match with Claremont, but won on total points, in an impressive and hard-fought match. They also split with Reynolds, in which SMUS dominated with front court play but Reynolds came up strong with serving power. After the first four matches, all teams in pool play had split their matches, one game apiece. It came down to SMUS’s final match against Mount Doug to secure two wins and assure a first-place standing in the pool. SMUS won both games, placed first in the pool, and went on to play Lambrick Park.

Aggressive hitting by Gilly Maycock and Steph Marsh and rock-solid setting from Leah Hall and Abbey Piazza were the dominating forces behind the wins. Shade Souc’s overhand serve and consistent passing built the foundations for the plays. Ali Pollen also came on strong, with forceful serving and strong spiking. Hannah McElderry came off the bench to provide some star power in matches against Reynolds, decisively blocking four hits in a row, and then earning two kills herself. Kate Cluley also came in strong off the bench to provide consistent passing and some kills.

After beating Lambrick Park consistently in tournament play and league play, SMUS had a shaky start against them on Saturday morning, and had to go to three games. Thanks to tough serving and gutsy net play in the third game, along with heroic scrambles from the setters to save the passes, the girls came out ahead to advance to semi-finals against Belmont. That is when the real drama began. The girls lost the first game, then were down five points in the second. They rallied to come back to win the second game. Madi Hadfield came in off the bench to deliver solid serves and aggressive court play. Serving rallies by Gilly Maycock, Steph Marsh, Leah Hall, Shade Souc and Madi Hadfield kept the momentum going.

Then, in the third game, after some difficulty with serve receive, SMUS was down 14-8. A sideout gave Gilly Maycock the serve. Fearless, Gilly quickly put away two aces. The team rallied. In a hard-fought game, Abbey Piazza and Shade Souc hit the floor to dig up the balls. Gilly kept the serve as the whole team played phenomenal volleyball. In the last moments, SMUS pushed at the net and hit the floor to dig up everything. Steph Marsh was an indomitable force at the net, refusing to let anything get by her. The girls won 16-14 in an incredible victory that rocked the entire gymnasium — one of the most amazing comebacks coaches and spectators had ever seen.

SMUS moved on to the championship match against Oak Bay. SMUS played tough in the first game. The lead passed back and forth between the two teams, until Oak Bay made a push at the end and won 25-23. SMUS’s last game was not as strong (25-15), but they had an amazing tournament. Standouts were Gilly Maycock and Steph Marsh on hitting; setters Leah Hall and Abbey Piazza were fearless. Truly, though, the victory was a team effort, and it was the teamwork and the determination to get every ball that ensured the second-place finish. Every player on the team deserves commendation.

Island Championships will be held at Ballenas School in Parksville November 27 and 28th. Good luck to the team as they prepare for the tournament.


Fifty-four athletes and six coaches experienced another successful city championships this past weekend. Over two days and 16 hours of racing at the 25th City Championships Regatta, the team endured lots of rain, mud, wind and near freezing temperatures. SMUS entered 18 of the 22 events and competed against 15 other high schools, making 16 finals.



Senior Girls 1X 1st (Maryann Watson)
Senior Girls 2X 5th (Rachel Ellis and Jessica Spoor)
Senior Girls 4X 1st (Maryann Watson, Michelle Aylard, Sydney Stockus and Caryn Dooner)
Senior Girls 8+ 1st (Alicia Pawluk, Maryann Watson, Michelle Aylard, Caryn Dooner, Sydney Stockus, Holly Trew, Rachel Ellis, Jinsun Erica Choi)
Senior Novice Girls 4X 2nd (Sky Richards, Jocelyn Stedman, Olivia Krusel, Chloe Carlson and Chelsie Hart)
Senior Boys 1X 5th (Maxim Ellison)
Senior Boys 2X 5th (Maxim Ellison and Aidan Morrice)
Senior Boys 8+ 5th (Alicia Pawluk, Maxim Ellison, Aidan Morrice, Kieran Hyatt, Johann von Schack, Josh Edgar, Harrison Duncan, Alistair Bryson and Stefan Hall)
Senior Novice Boys 8+ 1st (Sky Richards, Kieran Hyatt, Johann von Schack, Alistair Bryson, Harriosn Duncan, Andrew Henning, Ian Kapron-King, Fraser, McGee, Stefan Hall)
Junior Girls 4X 3rd (Cortny Ewonus, Alexis Thind, Hannah Neilson, Katherine Fretz)
6th (Gwen O’Connor, Rebecca Berardelli, Lihani Du Plessis, Gabby Jeliazkov)
Junior Girls 8+ 2nd (Sage Friswell, Rebecca, Berardelli, Katherine Fretz, Gabby Jezliakov, Cortny Ewonus, Alexis Thind, Hannah Neilson, Julia Milden, Lihani Du Plessis)
Junior Novice Girls 4X 4th (Olivia Pierce, Julia Milden, Val Irvine, Bairavi Murugakumar)
Junior Novice Girls 8+ 4th (Sage Friswell, Alexis Thind, Hannah Nielsen, Olivia Pierce, Lihani Du Plessis, Julia Milden, Carlina Kim, Val Irvine and Bairavi Murugakumar)
Junior Boys 8+ 3rd (Erin Pawluk, Luke Friswell, Liam Hyatt, Taylor Ellison, Julian Bryant, Jacky Chuang, Emiliano Iturriaga, John Shin and Rio Hong)
Junior Novice Boys 4X 1st (Chris Fenje, Robert Wyatt, Marcus Lelewski and Logan Gilmore)
Junior Novice Boys 8+ 2nd (Chris Fenje, Logan Gilmore, Marcus Lelewski, Julian Bryant, Jacky Chuang, Nicholas Cunningham, Emiliano Iturriaga, John Shin, Rio Hong)


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