A pattern is developing with the Chemainus Secondary School Cougars junior girls’ volleyball team.
Four matches into the season, the results have all come out the same for the team. The girls split the first two sets with their opponents, only to lose in the race to 15 points during the deciding set.
“It seems to be the same old story,” said coach Graeme Arkell of the early outings.
Chemainus played a pair of matches at Brentwood College to open the season Oct. 5 and went the distance with Brentwood and Brookes of Shawnigan Lake before losing out.
The Cougars hosted games at Chemainus Secondary last Thursday, beginning with a rematch against Brentwood. The first set ended in a 25-21 loss before Chemainus stormed back to take the second 25-21. Brentwood won the tiebreaker 15-10.
Chemainus played Queen of Angels in a following match and lost by just two points in the last game after the usual preceding split.
“It was a nailbiter,” conceded Arkell.
The girls are playing great volleyball and have especially shown some fantastic serving ability in some of the games, particularly in the latest meeting with Brentwood.
“So much of it is about serving and errors off the serve,” noted Arkell.
He’s in his first year at Chemainus Secondary and coaching volleyball for the first time after previously serving as a basketball coach at Woodlands Secondary in Nanaimo.
“The staff here is fantastic, having people like Jennie (Hittinger) around and Kelsey Bell,” Arkell praised.
The junior girls team members in Grades 8 through 10 show plenty of promise. There’s also lots of enthusiasm and excitement with 15 players on the roster.
“I’ve been really impressed with our practices,” said Arkell. “They always get there on time and putting forth an excellent effort.
“It’s a real team effort. They’re really coming together well. A lot of them are new, a lot of them are international students- about half.”
The next home games for the team are on Thursday, Oct. 26.