15U Boys Make BC Volleyball History : First Male Team Ever At Northwest Volleyball Club
The addition of a single club team wouldn’t be a big deal in most areas of the province, but the inclusion of a group of 11 teenage boys from Terrace is a huge deal for Volleyball in BC. For the first time ever the Northwest Volleyball Club has a boys program, thanks to the recent formation of a brand new 15U boys team.
“It wasn’t difficult to start the program because the talent pool for 15U has existed for a few years,” Head Coach Bruce Neid proudly stated. “The difficult part was finding the right coaching staff to commit to the team within our already busy schedules. We have a group of three of us, Kam Siemens, Joel Ringma and myself, that seem to work well together as we all bring a different perspective and set of skills to the mix. The talent for this age group was noticed about 2-3 years ago and I believe an attempt or two was made to start a team but there was never a full commitment until now.”
In the past, top boys players from Terrace would have to join a team in Prince George if they wanted to play club volleyball. A decision that not only cost a lot of money but also cost the families involved a lot of time travelling between the two cities. Type in a google search and you will quickly discover that the distance between Terrace and Prince George is 575km’s and it takes over 6 hours to drive one way. And while that commute still does exist when it comes to finding competition and playing games, the 15U Northwest boys don’t have to travel at all for practices in their own backyard.
“A 15U boys team in Terrace is fantastic for the sport locally. Now boys of all ages can see that there is potential for boys volleyball to be structured like the girls programs in our Northwest Club, which currently has two 15U teams, and one each in 17U and 18U,” Neid explained recently. “Our 15U boys have already proven to be competitive with the Prince George teams. I hope in the future, perhaps once a year, we can attract a couple Prince George teams to come to Terrace to play for a weekend so our community can see what type of talent we have to offer when competing against other Volleyball Clubs.”
If early returns are any indication of things to come, this group already has a solid foundation in place. Last month the Northwest Volleyball Club 15U boys went to Prince George for an Icebreaker tournament. They finished up the round robin 2-and-1 with their only loss coming against the PGYVC 16U Kodiaks Black team. In the playoffs, Neid’s group made it to the final where they faced that same team from Prince George. This time the Northwest boys came out on top, winning a three setter in what tournament organizers called the match of the weekend.
“We have eleven players, ten of which are 15U and one 14U. I believe they have all played for 2-3 years and every player is from Terrace. I think a big part of their love and passion for the game is from the family and friends support system in place. I know a number of their family members, parents, brothers and sisters, have had success playing in various levels of high school and post-secondary volleyball,” Neid summarized. “Based on these successes, I believe the boys get a huge boost of motivation to follow in their footsteps through not only volleyball but also to get scholarships for College and University education.”
Of course, tournament win aside, these young volleyball players still have a long ways to go. Although that said, getting a boys program started in Terrace is definitely a huge step forward for the development of the game in Northwest BC.
“We currently have and have had many great boys’ athletes of all ages in the Northwest. Basketball and Hockey seem to attract a lot of talent during the fall and winter but now Volleyball is another viable option for teenage boys to showcase their talent,” Neid proudly predicted “Our goals are simply to continue to improve as a team throughout the year. Our early success is great but we realistically expect our team to have its share of growing pains as we learn to work together in our first year as a Volleyball Club.”
Visit our Volleyball BC Club Championships page for more info.