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Sports Briefs: Volleyball Devils fifth at zone playdowns

Senior girls' squad falls just short of provincial championship berth



The Pemberton Red Devils senior girls' volleyball team fell just short of a chance to play in the B.C. High School Provincial 'A' Championships despite a strong showing at the zone playdowns last week.

The Devils placed fifth out of nine teams entered in the Lower Mainland zone championship tournament, winning two of four matches played in the Nov. 13 draw. The top two teams advanced to provincials and the third-place finisher qualified for a wildcard tournament.

Pemberton finished second at 1-1 in pool during round-robin play, falling 25-19, 25-12 to West Point Grey Academy before rebounding to sweep two sets from St. John's School (25-19, 25-22).

The Devils then knocked off King David High School (25-12, 25-16) to advance to a quarterfinal against Mulgrave School, but saw their season end there in a two-set loss (25-21, 25-16).

Head coach David Dunkin said he thought his team produced a good effort at the event while playing four matches in quick succession.

"I think they played their best volleyball of the year, which is a nice way to leave it," said Dunkin. "We didn't beat ourselves, certainly.

"The games we were supposed to win, we won, and we had a shot in the games that were a little more challenging but just couldn't seem to pull it out."

Members of this year's team included Lyra Tuck, Hannah Van Spronsen, Lauren Phare, Emma Eslake, Pala Kovacs, Madison Graves, Bailey Raimondo, Desirae Townley, Kelley Ouellet, Ashley LeBlanc, Anne Linklater and Clea Liakakos.

Saints to play for championship

The Whistler Saints are headed to the North Shore Football League's flag division championship game after a tense semifinal victory on Sunday, Nov. 17 in North Vancouver.

The Saints trailed the Packers 12-8 in the second half of the playoff contest, but quarterback Liam Forsyth found the end zone late on a 20-yard run from scrimmage to give Whistler a 14-12 win.

Earlier in the game, Benyon McKeen scored a touchdown on a 40-yard run and Logan Anderson connected on the ensuing two-point attempt.

The Saints, who hold top seed in the division after an 8-1 regular season, meet the No. 3-ranked Raiders in the Nov. 24 final at Norgate Park. The two teams split the season series, with Whistler taking a 26-12 win during Week 1 and the Raiders winning 16-0 on Oct. 14.

Ice Wizards facing The Fox team for charity

The Ice Wizards of the Whistler Men's 'A' Hockey League will be facing off against The Fox radio station's squad next weekend in support of a couple of great causes, with limited tickets on sale now.

The Fox team spends the winter travelling around the Lower Mainland playing senior men's teams to help raise money for the B.C. Children's Hospital, and the Ice Wizards will be their host on Nov. 30 at Meadow Park Sports Centre. The Whistler team will also be supporting the Movember initiative through proceeds from the game.

On top of what's sure to be an interesting match-up on the ice, there will be lots of other activity for spectators, including a Granville Island Brewing beer garden, 50/50 draw, chuck-a-puck contest and prizes and giveaways throughout the game. Puck drop will be at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at Riverside Café and other locations, as well as from any members of the Ice Wizards. Players will be set up in front of Nesters between 2 and 6 p.m. on Nov. 23 and 24 if tickets are still available. Kids under 12 get in with the donation of two non-perishable food items.

Moe Joe's has already donated $1,000 towards the game's causes and will also be hosting an after-party following the contest. Any individuals or businesses interested in making a separate contribution may contact Ian Pike at for more information.