Gaels keeping an eye on repeating as senior champs
GUELPH – When the Guelph CVI Green Gaels won the District 10 high school girls’ volleyball championship last February, it was their first title win in the league in 11 years.
They’re not planning on waiting that long for their next championship.
The Gaels remained undefeated in league play this season as they swept the Centre Wellington Falcons 3-0 Thursday at GCVI. The hosts won 25-14, 25-19, 25-11.
“So far so good,” GCVI coach Scott Heasman said. “We have about six new players so we’re trying to bring them along as best we can. We’re still trying to get lots of people playing time so that they’re able to play next year, but we do have some key components back from last year and they certainly help.”
Of the players back from last season, four were starters giving the Gaels a solid nucleus.
“They were key contributors from last year,” Heasman said. “They know their stuff and they’re good quality players.”
The Gaels have actually been road warriors this season. After starting with a win at home, they posted four consecutive victories on the road before returning to play at home against Centre Wellington. All of their pre-exams matches in 2019 will be in their own gym.
“Our last half of the season is going to be (mainly) at home,” Heasman said. “That makes things a little easier especially with the respect to travel and practice time. We play well at home and we like playing at home.”
GCVI is one of the senior teams that play home matches on a large gym and that can make a difference.
“Especially with serving,” Heasman said. “If you’re playing in a half gym, there’s not nearly as much space. We have good servers on our team who like to take lots of room. When we don’t have that room, we’re at a little bit of a disadvantage.”
The Gaels lead the league at 6-0 and are followed by the Ross Royals at 5-1, Centennial Spartans at 4-2, Orangeville Bears and St. James Lions both at 3-3, Bishop Macdonell Celtics at 1-4, Centre Wellington at 1-5 and Lourdes Crusaders at 0-5.
Despite the unbeaten record, the Gaels are nowhere near a finished product.
“The girls still have to improve,” Heasman said. “There are lots of things that we’re working on to make us better. What we don’t want is for the girls to get complacent. They won last year and, knock on wood, we haven’t lost a game since last year in the regular season. It’s not a bad thing to lose and it’s actually kind of hard to coach when you’re always winning, but we certainly do our best to continue to find ways in which we can improve and continue to find ways in which we can challenge the girls to make sure that they are always ready to play.”
GCVI is to complete the 2018 portion of its schedule next week with matches against its closest rivals as the Gaels are to host Centennial Tuesday and play at Ross Thursday.
Centennial 3 Orangeville 1 (16-25, 25-10, 25-14, 25-23)
St. James 3 Bishop Macdonell 2 (19-25, 23-25, 25-21, 25-21, 16-14)
Ross 3 Lourdes 0 (25-13, 25-10, 25-17)
Bishop Macdonell 3 St. James 0 (25-15, 25-22, 25-21)
Guelph CVI 3 Centre Wellington 0 (25-15, 25-10, 25-12)
Orangeville 3 Centennial 2 (25-12, 25-21, 20-25, 28-30, 15-12)
Ross 3 Lourdes 0 (25-17, 25-8, 25-12)
- Guelph Sports Journal