Kelowna duo warms up for beach volleyball worlds
Kelowna's Quinci Birker and Natalie Livingston continued their preparation for this summer's U17 World Beach Volleyball Championships with a strong effort last weekend at the Penticton Beach Volleyball Pro Series.
After finishing fourth in the AAA pool, Birker and Livingston shifted into the AA division for Sunday's playoff round.
The duo made quick work in their quarterfinal beating Leanne Wohlford and Sydney Thornton 21-16 , 21-13.
With their quarterfinal behind them, they entered the semifinal confidently and did a great job of serving aggressively and communicating well to earn a 21-16, 21-17 victory over Mary McMains and Doris Danelon.
In the final, Birker and Livingston really hit their stride, easily defeating the pair of Zuzana Fulkova and Lisa Pham 21-12, 21-17 to win gold in the AA division.
The intent was to compete at a higher level than either girl had ever competed in order to challenge the team to its fullest, and this was indeed achieved.
Another Kelowna team, Liam Birker and Tanner March had a successful weekend in Penticton.
Birker and March swept their pool in the AA division to advance to the AAA category for playoffs.
In a difficult crossover match, the Kelowna pair faced highly-ranked duo of Ed Hulshol and Joel
Caschetto. Battling hard, the Kelowna duo lost a well-fought battle 18-21
and 19-21 to the eventual bronze medalists.
On the consolation side, Birker and March kept up their athletic team play to post a 21-10, 21-17
win over Mert Tiryakigi and Brendan Wolfe. In the consolation final, they defeated Pat Smith and Jeordie Ker 21-12, 19-21 and 15-7.
Ranked 20th heading into the event, Birker and March placed ninth overall.