The start of something good

With the Blues women’s volleyball season coming to an end, it’s clear that they could see real success over the next few years


Considering the Capilano University Blues women’s volleyball team entered the season with an especially young team, their fourth-place finish in the Pacific Western Athletic Association (PACWEST)’s provincial playoffs could be considered a successful season. The team however, isn’t so convinced. “Obviously the team and myself are feeling a little bit like we missed an opportunity,” said Head Coach Cal Wholford.

After an exciting victory in the tournament’s quarter final match against the Columbia Bible College Bearcats, the Blues were slated for a semi-final matchup with their rivals, the Douglas College Royals. The women took the first set 25-18, but didn’t win another, ending their hopes of a gold or silver medal. They were then swept in Saturday’s bronze medal match, ending their season. “We were there and we were ready to play, but it just got away from us,” Wholford said.

“It’s hard to get up for that bronze medal match,” Wholford said. “I feel that a bronze medal match is harder to play than a gold medal match because you just came out of that disappointment, so to turn it around is difficult.” Nonetheless, the team felt they could have played better. “The team really worked hard for each other during the games, but I think the outcome just wasn’t what we wanted,” said third year middle Zoe Mydansky. “The other teams played a lot better, we didn’t bring our best game.”

Photo c/o Vancouver Sports Pictures

However, although the season ended with disappointment, this year’s campaign won’t be remembered for the losses in the payoffs.

With seven first years on the roster, there was much uncertainty around how the season would play out. But after a 4-6 start to the season, the team went on a six-game win streak that spanned from mid November to mid January. It wasn’t only the team’s record that was improving though. Anyone who spent time around the players could see a team transitioning from a collection of a few veteran players and many fresh faces, to one cohesive unit both on and off the court. “Over the season I thought we did really well, I was really proud of our team,” Mydansky said.

The team’s successes were acknowledged the week of provincials when three Blues plyers received PACWEST awards. Tyneille Neufeld was named a PACWEST First Team All-Star, with Isabela Lima and Emma Schill both being named to the conference’s All-Rookie Team. Lima continued to impress at provincials, earning herself a spot on the list of the tournament’s All-Stars.

So, while they missed on medaling, it looks like the program is poised foe success in the future. Neufeld, Mydansky and third year middle Meghan Koven all have two years of eligibility left. With the rest of the team having even more time, it seems that the future for Blues women’s volleyball is bright. “I think everyone’s motivated to do better than we did, knowing that we could have done better this year,” explained Mydansky. “That motivation will definitely play into next year and everyone’s drive to get better.”

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