From CBC. This past season the women’s volleyball program at Columbia made history three-fold when they finished 3rd in the regular season, 2nd Provincially, and 8th Nationally; all best finishes, and the first national appearance for the women’s squad. But with their best season to date behind them, Head Coach Duncan Harrison and his Bearcats are looking forward to the upcoming 2013/14 season and looking to once again make an appearance on the national stage.
With 8 of 10 of last year’s team returning for another season, the women’s volleyball program is off to a great start already! Key veteran players include: 5th year middle – April Vaandrager (formally van Wieren), 3rd year leftside – Sadie Ball, and 3rd year setter – Anna Cupido.
5 freshmen will be joining the returning 8.
Rachel Sytsma – Rachel, a 5’11” middle, comes from Kamloops, BC where she attended Sa-Hali Secondary. During her time there Rachel was named a Provincial All-star and Female Athlete of the Year in 2011. In 2012 she captained the Sa-Hali team who finished 1st in cities, 2nd in Okanogan’s, and 7th at ‘AA’ Provincials. Rachel was also a member of the Wolf Pack Club team grades 9-11, where she earned Most Improved Player in 2010, and the TRVC in grade 12.
Kendal Venzke – From up north, Kendal comes to Columbia from Palmer Alaska, where she attended Palmer High School. As a 5’10” outside hitter, Kendal helped her team to 2 regional championships, captaining the team in her senior year. In that year she was also named Athlete of the Year, and earned spot on the First All-region Team and the First All-state Team. Academically Kendal was in the top 10% of her class and graduated Suma Cum Laude.
Jodi Enns – Coming from the Prairies, Jodi is a 5’10” outside hitter from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. There she attended Centennial Collegiate. During her high school career she was named Rookie of the Year in grade 10, and MVP in grade 12. Jodi also played club for the JCVC Extreme. In 2013 they captured a U18 silver medal, and went on to finish 11th at Nationals. Academically Jodi earned honors and a top ten average in grade 9-12.
Stephanie Braaksma – Stephanie, a local girl from MEI, is a 5’7” libero. During here time at MEI, Stephanie captained the women’s team in 2011 & 2012, was named an All-star, and earned honors in each of her secondary years. Stephanie played club for the Air Walkers, which she also captained in 2011 & 2012, and helped them to a regional championship in 2012.
Katelyn Valgardson – Katelyn, a 5’7” outside hitter from Kelowna, BC, in no stranger to big games. While playing for the Kelowna Secondary Owls, a team she most recently captained, Katelyn helped her team to a ‘AAAA’ Provincial Championship in 2011, a ‘AAAA’ Valley Championship in 2012, where she was also named an All-star, and a 5th place Provincial finish in 2012, where she was also named a 2nd Team All-star. On the club side, was a part of a 4th place finish at the U18 Provincial Championships in 2013, and a 2nd place finish at the U18 Club Nationals (Div. 1 Tier 2). Academically, Katelyn received honor in all of her secondary years.