December Sport Spotlight: Volleyball

February 5, 2013 by  
Filed under Canadian Sport Features, Sport Spotlights

Volleyball is the second most popular team sport in the world. It is a physically demanding sport. Players are in constant motion, jumping an average of 300 times a match, and diving all over the court to make sure the ball does not hit the ground. We will take a look at how volleyball was created, and some recent High School tournaments from across Canada.


William Morgan – the director of the YMCA in Hollyoke, Massachusetts – created volleyball in 1895 by taking the framework of the German game Faustball and reworking the rules to make a more competitive sport. Some years later, after many rule tweaks and local competitions, the sport grew in popularity globally. In 1964, Volleyball was sanctioned as an official Olympic Sport and made its debut at the Tokyo Olympic Games.  It is currently estimated that over 500 million athletes worldwide participate in the sport.

In 1900, Canada saw its first Volleyball match when it was included in the schedule at a YMCA in Ottawa. After the first induction match, regular inter-city competitions took place in Ottawa, Montreal and Toronto.  Like in many other countries across the world, volleyball did not become popular until the end World War II. Canada’s first international Volleyball competition was nine years after the end of WWII at the 1959 Pan American Games in Chicago.

Recent Tournaments

Lambrick Park Lions – British Columbia

BC-women-volleyballThe Lambrick Park Lions (AA), who are ranked number 9 in all of British Columbia and the top women’s high school volleyball team from Victoria,competed in the Camosun College High School Tournament over Thanksgiving weekend.  For the third year in a row, they made it to the finals. Playing against a tough number 2 ranked AAAA team, they lost against South Delta. The competition was fierce and it was a great opportunity for the girls to improve their skills against such a talented squad. The girls were excited to be playing at such a high level, and their second place finish by no means dampened their spirit.

St. Mary Marauders – Saskatchewan

The 25th annual Mustang Volleyball tournament at Mount Royal Collegiate in Saskatoon took place over the weekend of Oct. 20th.  The St. Mary Marauders triumphed at the tournament losing only one game and claiming the senior boy’s volleyball title. During the preliminary round robin against St. Joseph’s, Centennial, and Birch Hills, they managed to keep a perfect record of 6-0. In the championship round robin against Regina Campbell, Meadow Lake, Carlton Comprehensive High School, St. Joseph’s and Holy Cross, they were 9-1.  Their stellar winning record paved their way to the final four where they had 2 straight set wins against Holy Cross and Meadow Lake to claim the championship title. The Marauders are three-time defending Saskatchewan High School Athletic Association 5A senior boy’s champions.

In the girls division, the Marauders also started off strong with 5-1 in the preliminary round robin against Virden and Saskatoon’s Mount Royal and Marion Graham. In the championship round robin, they finished 6-4 against Regina Campbell, Greenall, Marion Graham, Holy Cross and Evan Hardy. Although they had a great performance, it was not enough to beat Holy Cross who took the championship title.

A few of the Marauder players received individual recognition awards at the tournament.  Riley Houle was the tournament MVP and Aaron Halyk and Brianne Murray were selected to be a part of the all–star team.

Clarenville Cougars – The Dalhousie High School Volleyball Invitational

The Dalhousie High School Volleyball Invitational was held the weekend of October 6 in Halifax, Nova Scotia. The Clarenville Cougar boys’ team ended up going home with the gold medal. They won their first two matches against St. Joseph’s and Halifax West by winning 2 straight sets. They won their last qualifying match against a team from South Colchester, NS, which resulted in a first place finish in Pool 1 and a guaranteed spot in the Tier 1 playoff round.

The team won the quarterfinals against a team from Park View, NS. They faced Queen Elizabeth from Foxtrap, NL in the Semi-finals and took the game two sets to one. The fight for the Championship title was between Clarenville and Hortons. In the previous years tournament, Clarenville lost to Hortons in the finals. Adrenaline was high and redemption was in on the mind of the Cougars going into the final game. It is with much dedication that Clarenville came out on top claiming gold in two sets scored at 25-21 and 25-21. As well as the gold medal, three Clarenville players went back home with special recognition awards. Jordan Smith and Christopher Williams were named tournament all stars, and Nathan Barker received the title of tournament MVP.


Volleyball Canada Centre of Excellence

Volleyball Canada implemented Volleyball Canada Centre of Excellence (VCCE) programs in British Columbia last year. The Centre has now expanded into Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Ontario. With this expansion, there are now 116 Centres across the country.

The purpose of this program is to help prepare high performance athletes in the development of their volleyball career.  The training is based around skill development and low intensity repetitions with small groups. The staff consists of professional coaches are aware of what is necessary to develop the athletes skill to the next level.  The Centre is geared towards student athletes between grades 10-12, but there are some Centres that offer programs for student athletes in grade 8 and 9.

Other than intense training and skill development, the program also provides student athletes the opportunity for physical assessments, testing, weight training, and exclusive access to online resources.

This is an excellent program if you are interested in further developing your volleyball skills.  To find a centre near you, please click on the link provided –

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