Red Hawks snowboarder Sydney Churko holds her heel edge at the COSSA championship on Wednesday Feb. 22 at Sir Sam's Ski and Ride in Eagle Lake. Churko finished as the top Hawks female with her second place in the girls field and also second with her team (Dakota MacDonald and Mia Quigley) in the team competition. She is one of 14 Hawks to advance to the all-provincials./DARREN LUM Staff

Red Hawks senior volleyball team dominates Kawartha

By Darren Lum

Published Feb. 19 2019

On Wednesday Feb. 20 the Red Hawks senior girls' volleyball team will be the top seed playing for a chance to earn a berth to the all-provincials.

They earned their seeding with a dominant performance at the Kawartha Championship on Thursday Feb. 15 at Kenner Collegiate in Peterborough.

After two matches the Hawks were perfect not dropping a set beating championship host Kenner 3-0 and then Cambellford 3-0 in the final.

Head coach Dan Gimon who co-coaches the team with Janice Scheffee said the players are looking forward to hosting COSSA.

“They are excited at the opportunity to play in front of a home crowd and that shows us that we have been successful in raising their level of self confidence where in the past they would have been tentative. Having COSSA at home was also an incentive for the girls going into today's championship [on Thursday Feb. 14] and now it's nice not to have to travel for a change” he wrote in an email. “It's been one step at a time for them in a long season and they have been working hard to achieve the goals that we set as a team. Now comes the final hurdle.”

Gimon said the team may have started their Kawartha semi-final slowly but found their game.

“In the first match our team dominated Kenner both in serving and offence (after starting off missing the first five out of six serves).  We (co-coach Janice Scheffee and I) chalked it up to the girls getting the bad serves out of their systems and that's exactly how it played out.  The serving improved the girls calmed down and cruised comfortably to a 3-0 win (25-14 25-8 25-17)” he said.

In preparation for the final the coaches watched the other semi-final match between Campbellford and St. Thomas. They discovered the eventual finals opponent Campbellford didn't have a strong offence relying on their “decent” defence and mistakes committed by their opponents.

“They have a habit of leaving certain areas of the court undefended so those areas became our targets. When our offence was on they had difficulty defending. When we played the "free ball" game we often lost the rally due to an unforced error. The girls knew where to put the ball but given their age experience and the ‘adrenaline factor’ were not always successful in placing it there. That combined with a number of missed serves is what made the sets close. Campbellford was actually the only single A team to take a set from us this season and that was because we missed 11 serves that set. We decreased the number of unforced errors and ended up winning 3-0 (26-24 25-20 25-23). Too close for our liking but wins nevertheless” he said.