The Cochrane Cobras senior girls volleyball team took silver at the provincial championships in Strathmore last weekend.
The senior girls were very impressive over the course of the Alberta Schools’ Athletic Association (ASAA) Provincial Championships held Nov. 23 and 24, finishing 5-0 in their pool, taking out the likes of St. Paul, Barrhead, Camrose, Peace Wapiti and Lethbridge Collegiate Institute (LCI) in the process.
The Cobras were awarded a bye to the semi final, where they once again took down LCI in three sets, 25-20, 17-25 and 19-17 to advance to the gold medal match against St. Joseph Celtics of Grande Prairie. Cochrane High battled hard throughout the game but fell in three sets, 21-25, 25-18 and 12-15 to claim the silver medal.
Head coach Mike Sieben was very proud of his team’s effort regardless of the outcome not only during the final game, but the season as well.
“The season was very successful. I think our total match record throughout the season was 43 matches won and only two losses. We won three of the big tournaments at the beginning of the season and we lost in the finals at the University of Calgary tournament … we didn’t lose again until the provincial finals,” Sieben said.
“We won the Rocky View Championship, the Zone Championship and then we lost in provincials. Overall, the girls were playing very, very well and they were a good bunch of athletes and more importantly, good students so it was enjoyable coaching them this season.”
Sieben also said the Cobras progressed exponentially throughout the course of the season.
“A lot of the girls that were on the team, played volleyball in the club systems … so coming into this year we already had experienced volleyball players and right away we were able to work on different systems and formatting for when we played the highly competitive teams,” Sieben said.
“By the end of the season they were running plays that even some university teams run. It was very advanced and I was very happy that the girls were able to adapt and implement throughout the year.”
The Cobras should have a strong core next season as they only graduate three Grade 12s. Sieben says having a young team should keep them in the hunt for another successful year.
“We have three Grade 12s, seven Grade 11s and one Grade 10 so if all of those younger players come back next year, we should have another successful season,” Sieben said.
“But the thing I’ve found with girls and sports, is once they get into high school they may lose interest. Last year we have seven grade 11s and only three of them came back so it’s always hard to tell what you’re going to get from year to year.”
The senior boys Cobras had a tougher go at the provincial tournament, managing to only win one match against the Peace Wapiti Academy Titans in three sets 28-26, 23-25 and 15-11. The result meant the boys team missed the playoff round.