Skip to content

Carnduff volleyball teams medal at provincials

First senior girls volleyball title for southeast school

CARNDUFF - The Carnduff Education Complex Tigers volleyball program had a great showing at the Saskatchewan High Schools Athletic Association’s 3A volleyball provincial tournaments this year.

The Tigers senior girls’ volleyball squad won the gold medal at provincials in Shellbrook and Canwood on Nov. 19 and 20, while the senior boys’ brought home the bronze medal from provincials in Unity the following weekend.

Carnduff was the class of the tournament at senior girls’ provincials, as they won all seven matches, and lost just one of 15 sets. They defeated another southeast entry, the Kipling Magyars, 2-1 (20-25, 25-16 and 15-11) in the gold medal game.  

It was not only the first provincial senior girls volleyball title for the school, which opened in 2004, but to the knowledge of coach and school principal Ryan Nichols, it’s the first in the sport for a Carnduff school.

“Our school always strives to make it to provincials, and obviously the goal is to always win a championship or place in the top three, and this year our team was successful in capturing the gold medal,” said Nichols.  

The fact that they beat another southeast team in the final reflects the strength of the sport in this region, he said.  

“We battled all season long at many tournaments, at conferences, regionals and in the final at provincials,” said Nichols.  

Carnduff also bested Kipling at regionals and knocked them off other times during the season.  

The Tigers communicated well, and they played all facets of the sport very well throughout the weekend, Nichols said.

“They played really well considering with the COVID shutdown and basically the shutdown of all sports, they really hadn’t played volleyball in probably two years, so to play as a complete team and battle through adversities where you haven’t played in a long time, I think it just goes to show what a great group of young ladies we had, and how they persevered,” he said.  

The Tigers have just two Grade 12 students in Alex Jensen and Jamie Levesque, so they should be strong again next year.

Carnduff’s senior boys rattled off three straight wins to open the tournament, defeating Dalmeny 2-0 (25-11, 25-15), Biggar 2-0 (25-18, 25-15), and Shaunavon 2-0 (25-20, 25-20). Their final round robin game was a 2-1 loss to Saskatoon Christian (25-22, 21-25, 16-14).  

The Tigers opened the playoffs with a 2-0 victory over Kipling (25-13, 25-17) in the quarter-finals, but then lost 2-0 to Osler Valley Christian Academy (25-21, 25-15). Osler would go on to win provincials. 

In the bronze medal game, Carnduff would face Saskatoon Christian again, and this time came away with a 2-0 victory (25-21, 25-21).  

“We attacked well. We’re a strong attacking team out of the left side. We have two pretty dominant left side attackers, but we distributed our offence well. We had a right side (hitter) who came in late in the season with our team, and was a very serviceable right side attack. And our setter distributed offence really well,” said coach Marcel Macfarlane.

Carnduff focused on trying to minimize their errors, and preventing the opponents from going on a big run.

MacFarlane said the top five teams were really tough, but he could see the difference that not playing for a year made on some of the other teams.

Carnduff last won a medal in senior boys’ volleyball in 2017; it was also a bronze medal. They’ve been to provincials for quite a few years.

The Carnduff senior boys will lose just three players this year, but one of them is their setter, and two of them are their strong left-side hitters.

But Nichols believes the future looks bright in both girls and boys volleyball, with many student athletes interested in being involved in the sport.