This season, the MGCI Junior and Senior Girls Volleyball teams rose to the challenge of competing against elite teams in the Tier 1 division. At a more competitive level than last year when they competed in Tier 2, the Junior team won two out of their regular season games and placed second at an invitational tournament.

The Junior Girls Volleyball team practising. Photo: Jenny Bai

The season began in mid-November and ended in the beginning of February, with both teams holding practices one to two times a week, depending on gym availability. The teams were coached and supervised by Ms. Manjra as well as Marlon, a coach from the community. Each team played a total of eight games in their regular season.

Last year, the Junior girls placed first in the Tier 2 division for the south region forcing both the junior and senior teams up to Tier 1 by default. While playing in Tier 1 was definitely a challenge for the teams, they showed great improvement as the season progressed. “I’ve seen incredible growth on both teams,” said Ms. Manjra. “It’s unfortunate that the seniors were forced into this situation but they still have incredible spirit and they’ve grown so much.”

The juniors won two separate games against Riverdale CI on 4 December 2017 and 15 January 2018 with scores of 2-0 and 2-1 respectively. The girls also played and lost against Northern SS, North Toronto CI, and Malvern CI. Aside from regular season games, the team participated in an invitational tournament at Danforth Collegiate and Technical Institute on 14 December 2017. The tournament did not divide the players into Tier 1 or Tier 2 and the girls managed to place second out of nine schools. Scores and standings for all of the girls volleyball teams in the Toronto District School Board can be found here.

The Junior Girls Volleyball team playing. Photo: Jenny Bai

When asked about her thoughts on the team’s performance this season, Junior team member Edith Nyamekye said, “Playing in Tier 1 has definitely made it difficult for us to perform well. We really needed to work as a team which can be hard with new members and people we aren’t as comfortable with.” In practices, the team continued to improve their unity and collaboration, but unfortunately, neither the Junior or Senior team made it to playoffs. Maggie Xu, Captain of the Junior team, said, “Overall, I’m proud of how the team has progressed. Our performance improved significantly since the beginning of the season, and although there will always be room for improvement, I think we worked our hardest to play the best that we could.”