Four southwest coast volleyball players recently returned from the Elite Volleyball Championships in Moncton on Aug. 6 and 7 at the Moncton Coliseum Arena.
Joel Goodyear, a St. James Regional High student, played on the under-16 boys’ elite team and brought home gold. An under-16 boys’ developmental team from Newfoundland brought home silver.
Goodyear described the tournament as wicked. The training prior to the tournament was difficult, he said. There was a lot of technical stuff he didn’t know before, which he had to practice a lot.
The skills he picked up at training helped him in his game, he said. Goodyear said he definitely plans to try out next year.
Shannon McDermott, from Burnt Islands, played on the under-18 boys’ elite team. Last year, he played on the under-16 boys’ development team, which won a bronze medal.
McDermott said despite his team placing last, it was a good trip.
“We had a good team, but I guess the focus and concentration wasn’t there,” he said.
Some of the biggest challenges of the tournament were the training and playing the other teams, which he said were really good.
Sisters Rebecca and Kathleen Carter played on the under-17 girls’ elite team. Kathleen played in the same tournament last year with the under-15 girls’ elite team.
Rebecca said the tournament went well. Her team finished sixth out of nine, with two wins and three losses. She said one of the best things about the tournament was bonding with her team and learning new skills.
“I connected with a lot of people (and) I made a lot of new friends,” said Rebecca’s sister Kathleen. “I just had an overall amazing trip.”
She said the training in St. John’s and later Sackville, N.B. was hard. They trained about four hours a day in St. John’s and about three hours a day in Sackville.
The under-17 girls’ elite team played two NTCC teams, which are Canada Games teams. Kathleen said the NTCC teams were the best of the best, but her team held on.
“It was really hot up there, but we pushed through it, and we bonded as a team,” said Kathleen.
The tournament hosted the top provincial teams from Eastern Canada.