AYLESFORD, N.S. – The West Prince Islanders won a bronze medal at a tournament hosted by the Valley Skyhawks here recently.
The Islanders had only seven players available, including three who were actually 16-under for this tournament.
After starting play with a 2-0 (19-25, 25-23) loss to the Truro Tide, the Islanders came away with a 2-0 (25-23, 25-21) win over the Antigonish Storm.
“The boys had a rough start, but picked up their game as the evening went on,” said Islanders co-coach Allan Clark. “Part of this trip each year is our team billeting with the Skyhawk players, and getting a chance to make new friends.
“This was certainly the case again this year.”
In the quarter-finals, the Islanders faced CVC from Dartmouth, N.S. The Islanders took the first set 25-20, and then squeaked out a close 28-26 victory in Set 2.
This moved West Prince into the semifinals against the host Skyhawks. The Islanders lost the first set to the Nova Scotians 12-25. Set 2 appeared to be more promising for the Islanders as they were down by only one point, 16-17, before the Skyhawks ran off seven straight points to put the match out of reach and win 25-17.
“Serve and serve receive were a problem for most of the weekend,” assessed Clark.
This put the Islanders into the bronze-medal match against the Valley Wave from Wolfville, N.S. The P.E.I. squad came away from this match with an exciting 2-0 (25-21, 28-26) victory.
“Overall, we were quite pleased with how our guys played,” said Islanders co-coach Adam Gallant. “We came here with only seven guys, and were certainly younger than most of the other teams here.
“Nova Scotia teams have been playing for three months whereas we have only been going for one month, losing a lot of gym time due to the poor weather we have experienced over the past few weeks.
“Jack Perry, our big middle was also having some problems with an injury so others guys had to step in to play new positions and did a pretty good job. All seven players can be proud of how they represented the club and our province.”
Both coaches said they are looking forward to the next three weeks on P.E.I., and the provincial championships being hosted at Holland College on May 3. The Islanders hope to have a team in both the 16-under and 18-under divisions.
The Islanders’ next tournament is being hosted by the Charlottetown Aces at Colonel Gray High School on Wednesday, April 16.