Owls capture Heat-Ogopogo tourney

KSS senior and tournament MVP Hillary Schell goes for the kill against St. Francis Xavier (Edmonton) during the UBCO Heat/Ogopogo high school girls volleyball tourney. - Contributed
KSS senior and tournament MVP Hillary Schell goes for the kill against St. Francis Xavier (Edmonton) during the UBCO Heat/Ogopogo high school girls volleyball tourney.
— image credit: Contributed

The Kelowna Owls continue to live up to their billing as the top 4A team in B.C. high school girls volleyball.

For the second straight year, the No. 1-ranked KSS squad struck gold at the UBC Okaganan Heat-Ogopogo girls tourney.

The Owls won the 40-team event despite the absence of captain Kaitlyn Given who sat out the weekend with an injury.

In Saturday's final at UBCO, Kelowna took down Chilliwack's High Road Academy—the No. 1-ranked A team from Chilliwack—in two straight sets.

It marked a measure of revenge for the Owls who dropped their first set of the year to High Road a day earlier in pool play.

"Amanda Hait and McCall Cappozzi both played extremely well in the middle, while serving and defensive specialists Breeanne Enright and Alia McLure Reynolds both came up with some key plays to help the Owls to victory in both sets," said Owls coach Tony Sodaro. "Cayte Wilson played the match of her life and Gabby Down came in on the rightside to put up some huge blocks and provided the Owls with a huge boost of emotional energy that seemed to carry the team to new heights throughout the medal rounds. (Tournament MVP) Hillary Schell led all hitters throughout the entire tournament and provided some much needed veteran leadership that definitely carried the Owls to the championship."

After finishing second in pool play, the Owls downed Pen Hi 2-0 in the first round of the playoffs, then defeated Kelowna Christian 2-0 in the quarters.

In the semifinals, KSS took down No. 3-ranked Clayton Heights with Schell and middle blocker Amanda Hait leading the way, along with some solid passing by libero Megan Witala and a balanced offensive attack orchestrated by Cayte Wilson.

While Schell was named the tournament's MVP, KSS teammates Wilson and Hait were named tournament all-stars, along with Kelowna Christian's Jasmine Randhawa, and Veronica Livingston of Immaculata.

The KCS Knights finished in a tie for fifth after defeating Prince George in their final match on Saturday.

Immaculata finished in a tie for seventh place out of 15 teams in the top tier of the tournament.

In the second tier of competition, the Rutland Voodoos finished in fourth place.

This weekend, KSS will host the Best of the West Tournament with 48 teams competing in each of the boys and girls draws.


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