‘Silver’ lining to Saints’ season

The High Prairie St. Andrew’s Saints junior girl’s volleball team won a silver medal after placing second at the northwest zone championships Nov. 2-3 in Peace River. In the front row, left-right, are Kelly Cox, Mischa Deering, Kirsten Bruder and Jessica Gordon. In the back row, left-right, are head coach Jason Cottingham, Heidi Porisky, Alison Donohue, Abbie Cottingham, Finn Marko, Sage Keay, Ella Deering, Elle MacIntosh and assistant coach Taneille Crooks.

Richard Froese
South Peace News

St. Andrew’s Saints junior girl’s volleyball team completed the season with a silver lining after finishing second in the northwest zone finals Nov. 2-3 in Peace River.

The Saints lost to T.A. Norris of Peace River in two sets in the final of the eight-team tournament.

“The zone tournament was highly competitive and all teams brought their A game,” head coach Jason Cottingham says.

St. Andrew’s beat Fairview in three sets in the semi-finals and La Crete in two sets in the quarter-finals.

A nerve-wracking semi-final win pushed St. Andrew’s into the final.

“In the end, Elle MacIntosh delivered a bullet serve for the 16-14 win in the third set to defeat Fairview to move us on to the finals,” Cottingham says.

In round-robin play, the Saints beat T.A. Norris 25-21, 25-22 and Georges. P. Vanier of Donnelly 25-19, 25-12, but lost to Peace High 22-25, 17-25.

“The Saints had a fantastic year, probably the best in school history for junior girl’s volleyball,” Cottingham says.

“St. Andrew’s is a small school and not expected to be competing at an elite level, yet the school produces great athletes and they do compete…”

After beating T.A. Norris earlier in the tournament, the Saints faced a stronger challenge in the final.

“The Saints worked hard and played to win all season, but the stars were not aligned in our favour that day,” Cottingham says.

He acknowledges the senior players Alison Donahue, Abbie Cottingham, Finn Marko, Ella Deering and Elle MacIntosh.

“Without these athletes on the team, we would not have been as successful,” Cottingham says.

On the way to the zones, the Saints won their second successive High Prairie School Division title on Oct. 27, the Josh Halverson Invitational hosted by Prairie River in High Prairie on Oct. 12-13, and finished second in the Ty Dennison Memorial Tournament in Peace River on Sept. 29.


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