By Darren Lum
Published Dec. 4 2018
Come out show your support and cheer on the Red Hawks this week as they square off against Kawartha area schools in exhibition play.
Both of the teams the senior and junior girls will be in action on Thursday Dec. 6 starting at 2 p.m. at the Haliburton Highlands Secondary School.
Senior coach Dan Gimon thinks the home tournament (best of two game format) provides an opportunity for the team.
“They’re more than ready to play at home and excited to be at home. It will be a good starting point” he said.
Although the team was a little “nervous” at home to start last season the Hawks will be better prepared mentally this time around.
Unless the Hawks can finish as the best team in Kawartha so they can host COSSA they will not host a tournament again this season.
Gimon expects the field of teams for the home tournament to include Lindsay Collegiate Vocational Institute Fenelon Falls Secondary School I.E. Weldon Secondary School and Brock High School or St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Secondary school.
Also in action will be the 14 juniors who are coached by Steve Smith.
Both teams are assisted by Janice Scheffee.
A captain has not been named for the seniors yet. It will be decided in time to lead the 12 player roster for the season.
This year’s squad includes an additional setter to share the workload.
Emma Casey moved up from junior and shares the setting duties with returning senior setter Arden Harrop. Gimon said their skills are comparable and distributing the workload is a boon for his setter and the team.
“It’s kind of nice because last year we had one setter. This year we have the option so this way [Harrop] doesn’t have to play the whole game” he said.
An additional year for his returners has strengthened the skill set of his starters.
However this year’s squad has less depth with the departure of four players.
“We may have a stronger starting six but a weaker bench this year. That’ll be the challenge” he said.
Last year the team was in the rebuilding stage and didn’t have high expectations.
However the team excelled and progressed much better than the coach anticipated.
Gimon loved how his team played last year but is being conservative with what he wants and said expectations will be set as a team.
“I’m not really setting my expectations yet. Last year I had a meeting with the girls and we kind of decided all together and decided as a group what we’re going to do” he said.
This week (after press time) the team was expected to have held a meeting to discuss the expectations and what they want to achieve this season. Expectations will change depending on the competition Gimon said.
“It was partway through the season before I realized the potential. Same thing here. We’ll have to see what the other teams are like first and then either raise the expectations or lower them or keep them the same” he said.