It has been a strong season for the Steinbach Christian School varsity boys volleyball team, ranked number one in the province heading into playoffs.
Coach Scott Wiebe talks about their success.
“We've had a very good season up to up till now. I think what's probably been the best thing, is last year we had a very young team, mostly grade 11, and that entire team minus one player, has come back. And so, it's just been a really good continuity for the team. We've added some new players that came up from JV last year and they fit in really nicely and they have just been working really well together.”
Another key to their success could be what they are learning in the classroom, Wiebe adds.
“We've been really focusing on just being the best team that we can be in terms of communication and commitment and just good character traits. This year, we've been meeting twice a week for what we'll call classroom sessions where we're just focusing on ‘team’ and ‘character’ and some of those pieces that we feel that if the guys are working well for one another, that will translate to playing well for one another on the court.”
Their theme this year is “Doing nothing out of selfish ambition.” Wiebe says this promotes being aware of those around you and what their needs are, finding ways to help others.
“My coaching philosophy has always been that I only see them for a couple of years as they roll through the volleyball program, but I really want to set them up for life beyond just volleyball. And so, focusing on some of those character traits is something they can take beyond their volleyball careers.”
Throughout the season, Wiebe has looked for ways to continue challenging this strong team, helping them improve their skills and stay at the top of their game.
“So, we entered some tournaments this year that we hadn't been in in the past,” he says. “We’re a AAA school team and the tournaments we’ve gone to have been all higher end AAAA tournaments. So, we're playing some of the better teams and still seeing some pretty good success against them. I think that's been helping to keep our skills sharp and the difference between the AAAA teams and the AAA teams isn't that big. So, we felt we could compete, and we've just been doing really well.
“I think the guys have risen to that challenge, seeing that they're playing against some of the bigger teams from the bigger schools and yet have success there, gives them confidence.”
Wiebe and his team will step onto the court today as the playoffs begin, facing Niverville today and then Edward Schreyer next week.
“Niverville is a strong team,” Wiebe says. “They're well coached, they play really good defense. So, we're going to have to bring a really good game against them. Our goal all season has been to qualify for provincials, which happens in a couple of weeks. To do that, we have to win our match against Niverville and then we have to win our match against Edward Schreyer in Beausejour.”
Wiebe says being ranked #1 in the province right now only means they must keep their foot on the gas pedal and not take anything for granted.
“We have to work hard, have to respect the other teams because they are going to be good challenges for us.”
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