128 volleyball teams from across western Canada traveled to Winnipeg this weekend for Volleyball Canada’s U14 national championships.
88 girls teams and 40 boys teams hoped to bump, set, and spike their way to the top spot. Girls teams played at the RBC Convention Centre downtown, and the boys tournament was at the Dakota Fieldhouse in St. Vital.
The tournament, which is one of three at this level across the country, is open for any U14 team to enter.
“All teams can register,” said Volleyball Manitoba Executive Director John Blacher, “and where you get placed in the championship in terms of your division or tier is based on your result at the provincial championships.”
It’s the first time Manitoba has hosted a national championship event since 2016. Blacher says the event is often the largest tournament players have ever competed in.
“It’s a lot of these kids’ first chance to play in a national championship, first time to play in a facility like this,” he said. “The atmosphere is unbelievable… that’s the part of our events that are really special.”
The event attracts thousands of people to Winnipeg for the weekend. In addition to giving the city an economic boost, Blacher says sports championships give young players a chance to see many ways to keep sport in their lives, whether they’re on or off the court.
“Maybe they’ll keep playing as an adult, maybe they’ll become a coach, maybe they’ll become a referee,” Blacher said. “There’s lots of ways to stay involved in sport for life.”
The championship wrapped up Sunday evening.
For a list of standings, visit ISET Sports.
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