YORKTON - Two Yorkton volleyball players Reid Pfeifer and Austin Andres have been playing with a Regina team, culminating with a trip to nationals in Edmonton.
The national event was a huge one for both Yorkton players.
“It was amazing. There were so many teams, and for us to do as well as we did was great,” said Andres. “It’s something I’m always going to remember.”
In terms of memories Andres said the last two years were lost to COVID, and the year before that he was injured, so his time with the Regina team was huge.
“It was one of the highlights I’ll never forget,” he said.
Reid Pfeifer said while he had played at nationals when it was in Regina as a member of the local Bongos the Edmonton event was more impressive.
“It was a whole different atmosphere. Lots more people, Lots of high-end volleyball you don’t get to see in person often,” he said.
As a player getting to watch high level players was a great aspect of the event, said Reid Pfeifer.
“I watch players in my position, watching to pick up things that they do that I don’t do,” he said, adding he can then work on incorporating a few new moves into his game.
Pfeifer and Andres were recruited by the RVC (Regina Volleyball Club) boys U18 team to play with them throughout the Club season the past five months.
The RVC is a “very high end competitive team comprised of most of the best players from Regina, Moose Jaw and surrounding area,” explained Yorkton volleyball coach Dion Pfeifer.
“Both boys had spent the past four years with the local Bongo team - but the RVC team was putting together a team that would compete at the highest level - and were going to attend Nationals in Edmonton as well.”
The experience was one Reid Pfeifer said ended up surprising him.
“It was actually better than I thought it was going to be,” he said.
Coach Pfeifer said the boys had to put a lot of effort into playing with RVC.
“The boy’s commitment was second to none as they travelled to Regina for Tuesday night and Sunday afternoon practices every week from January till May,” he reported, adding they did have a lot to offer the Regina squad.
“They had both played with Team Sask the past four years as well - and therefore brought lots of experience and skill to the RVC club.”
“It was good having a buddy to car pool back and forth,” said Andres.
The team headed to nationals ranked 15th in Division 2.
On the opening day of competition, the team went 3-0 in pool play, then went 2-1 on day two to rank second in the pool, advancing to the Tier I playoffs, where they defeated an Ontario team who were ranked number one 2-1, then last 2-1 to a Quebec team in the quarter finals, to finish fifth overall in Tier I of their Division.
“The team had a great weekend - and both Reid (outside hitter) and Austin (middle) most definitely contributed to the team's success,” said Dion Pfeifer. “Both were starters on the RVC team. Reid was the captain for the season. Both boys had a great weekend as they displayed their skills with the best players in Canada.”
The team finished the highest of any Saskatchewan team at Nationals in their division.