The Royal Oak Eagles Grade 8 girls volleyball team finished back-to-back perfect seasons on March 8, defeating Gordon Head in the city final on home court at Royal Oak middle school.
That makes it two straight seasons of undefeated volleyball for the team, said coach Shon Ryan, Claremont teacher and well known volleyball advocate.
“There has been incredible growth with the players and I am excited to see them continue to develop as athletes at Claremont next year,” said Ryan. “This group of girls haven’t not lost a match in middle school volleyball since Grade 6.”
The cohort of Eagles will join a strong group of Grade 9 players at Claremont that won the city Grade 8 title at Royal Oak last year.
Helping out at Royal Oak this year were two players from Claremont Spartans volleyball program, Victoria Vogel (Grade 10) and Kailey Toker (Grade 11).
“It has been a fabulous experience for our girls,” Ryan said. “They have established great bonds and [the senior girls] are incredible motivators and very capable volleyball players.”
Vogel and Toker worked with Eagles players one-on-one, in group settings and on the court during practice.
“Their energy, enthusiasm and love for the game is infectious,” Ryan said. “They really complete the coaching package.”
Royal Oak finished first in their pool at the city championships and defeated Arbutus in the semifinal, 25-14, 25-05. The Eagles then fell behind to Gordon Head in the final, dropping the first set 17-25, before they came back to win 25-23 and 15-5 victory.
The Royal Oak Eagles feature Sierra Edwards, Jessica Jay, Kennedy McAdams, Mary Nguyen, Grace O’Regan, Brooklyn Ryan, Faith Rompain, Mya Sheridan, Ellie Vance, Jordan Vearer, Jill Waller and Charlotte Westhaver.
Some of the players also play club in the Iron Maidens (Digging Divas) U14 Volleyball Team and in the Victoria Volleyball Association.
“The future of girls volleyball looks strong in Victoria,” Ryan said.