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Monday, Aug. 20, 2018
Christmas practices pay off for U14 Chill girls
by Randy Pascal

The Northern Chill 14U Black girls volleyball team are competing in “Championship” flight and they clearly want to stay there. Capturing first place in their pool at the McGregor Cup tournament last Saturday in Barrie, the locals emerged victorious in three of their four matches, sliding into fifth place in the nine team event.

The 14U Chill looked every bit the contender in the morning, taking down both the Oakville Thunder (25-23, 25-22) and the Georgian Cubs – Red (25-13, 25-17) in straight sets. A bit of bad luck for the Sudbury girls in the cross-over affair, with the top two teams in the end both sitting over in Pool “A”.

The end result was a quarter-final match, for the Chill, opposite E381 Mike (Etobicoke), the team which would garner silver at the end of the day. The northern girls went tooth and nail with the GTA powerhouse, beaten 25-27, 16-25 in a pair of highly competitive sets.

Thankfully, coach Vanessa Chorkawy and company regrouped nicely, outlasting Reach Aspire (Toronto) 17-25, 25-15, 15-9. “Christmas practices sure paid off as the girls entered the morning games focused and hungry,” noted Chorkawy. “We played disciplined volleyball, with a huge emphasis on doing the right thing versus the easy thing.”

Individually, the former Lakehead Thunderwolves star turned coach noted a handful of key performances. “Alexia Lemay-Evans is proving to be a very dynamic middle who has become a force at the net,” said Chorkawy. “”Her awareness and disciplined blocking is causing trouble for opposing teams.”

Alexa Gordon emerged as a force on attack, displaying the athletic prowess and ability to attack balls that was highlighted at tryouts. Our setters kept feeding her the ball as she gained confidence, and teams could not find an answer to her left-handed swing.”

“There was noticeable improvement with Hayley Bertand in all aspects of her game, including serve receive attack transition and getting her feet to the ball,” Chorkawy added. The 2017-2018 Chill U14 Black lineup also features Erin Wiseman, Mackenzie Selk, Rory Frantz, Emma Coutu, Grace Perrier, Haven Fournier, Sophie Gaffney, Brianne Perreault and Kayla Presley.

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