A poor start to the tournament — and in their quarter-final match-up — proved too much to overcome for the Walnut Grove Gators.
Competing at the 3A senior boys provincial volleyball championships at the Langley Events Centre, the Gators placed sixth out of the 20 teams.
“I felt like maybe we were a little bit nervous on day one,” said Gators coach Gary Lutes.
The team, the second seed from the Fraser Valley, was in all three matches in pool play on the first day, but failed to pick up any victories.
That gave them a tougher draw in the championship round and after beating Delta in the round of 16, they lost 3-2 to Dover Bay in the quarter-finals. The Gators were down 2-0 and battled back to force a fifth set, ultimately falling short, 16-14.
“The first two sets we were non-existent,” Lutes said. “Your best guys have to be your best guys and if they are not, you are not going to beat anybody.”
While happy to finish in the top eight of the tournament, Lutes said both he and his players thought a top-four finish was realistic so they were disappointed to come up short in that quest.
Walnut Grove’s Brett Christensen was named a second team all-star.