The 2018 club season saw the SHOCK 15U girls begin defense of their Provincial and Western Canadian Championships by playing in the 16U Gold Division at the President's Day Classic in Minneapolis in mid-February. Inconsistency was to be expected and that was the case as the girls got their first chance to compete with a new line-up. Pool play on Day 1 resulted in SHOCK dropping from the top 16. They rebounded on Day 2 however, winning all of their matches, playing solidly and finishing the tournament as the highest ranked Manitoba team playing in that division. The following week was the first test at their own age group with the Volleyball Manitoba Premier Tournament. Steady play was enough to get them to the final where they lost to a better Dynamo Red team. At this point in the year, the game was on and the process to close the gap began. Two 16U tournaments followed in March and, although expectations were higher than the results, Shock continued to make progress and finished higher in each event played. A fifth place finish at the Bison 16U tournament in early April continued the trend. Execution of a faster offense was the goal and it was finally starting to come together a bit for the team. The Dynamo Red 15U Tournament was next and it was an important one for the team. While play was still not as consistent as the team would like, the final match was contested again with Dynamo Red. Dynamo took the first set handily and was then forced to a third by the second set win by Shock. The girls showed heart and ultimately earned a tough 15-13 final set victory to take the title. The next two weeks were hard as we tried to put some finishing touches on an all-around game that suffered while we put a faster offense in place. While preparing for The Manitoba Provincial Championship, the team encountered a small set back with an injury three days prior to competition. The girls came together even more and did their jobs well to allow the team to advance to the semi-finals without putting additional stress on our injured player. A solid tape job by the athletic therapist on site provided us the opportunity to compete with our complete team and Shock took advantage. A two set victory over Club West in the semi-final match was followed up by a two set win over Dynamo Red to secure the second consecutive Manitoba Provincial Championship for this group. A total team effort was absolutely required to come out on top but selections of individual awards included all-stars Kaija Dueck, Dylan Moyer and tournament MVP Andi Almonte. We look forward to The Volleyball Canada National Championships in Edmonton taking place May 17-19 and will give our best effort to defend our title. Great job girls and good luck in Edmonton!
SHOCK Volleyball Club