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Senior Girls Volleyball
Gisèle-Lalonde wins fourth straight OFSAA volleyball crown

By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

Gisèle-Lalonde's dominance on the volleyball court has reached historic proportions after the Titans won their fourth successive provincial 'AA' championship on Wednesday, something that has not been done since 1990.

The Titans went a perfect 4-0 in their pool, winning all eight sets without a loss. They then swept St. Mary Central Secondary School from Coburg in the quarterfinals 25-18, 25-22 and 25-21 to set up a rematch of their NCSSAA championship game with Samuel Genest in the semi-finals.

After winning the first set 25-12, the Titans were pushed to the limit by the Lazors in the second set, but ultimately emerged victorious with a 30-28 win. They then kept their unbeaten streak alive with a 25-18 victory in the third set to win the match and advance to the final where they faced a determined team from Stratford Central Secondary School.

The Titans got off to a strong start against their Strratford opponents, taking the first set 25-14. They continued to roll in the second set, winning it 25-13.

Stratford finally got their legs under themselves in the third set, muscling out a 25-22 win and spoiling the Titans perfect run to the championship. Any hopes of forcing a fifth set were dashed in the fourth stanza as the three-time defending champions won the set 25-23 for their fourth straight title.

Ironically, the only other school to win four straight provincial championship in girls volleyball was Stratford Central from 1987 to 1990.

Besides winning their fourth straight OFSAA AA championship, the Titans also manged to go through the entire NCSSAA season and the OFSAA tournament without losing a single set.

This year's team was led by captain Sabrina Roy who has been a starter on all four senior championship squads. Other members of the team include libro Jessika Bolduc and first year player Olivia Witteveen who Titans coach Marcel Martin refers to as a magician and conductor.

"Her setting skills are out of this world," Martin says about the Grade 11 student. "As far as setters goes, I'm of the opinion that she is the best in the province for her age group."

Martine Doucet only joined the team a month ago to provide depth at defence as the Titans second libro. Davon Von Eicken-Bursey:played middle alongside with Élyse Patry, while Jessica Bassolé was the team's back-up power hitter to Roy.

Émie Gadboury is the team's youngest player. The Grade 10 student and second year starter delivered the final spike that killed any hope of a fifth set in the final and delivered the Titans the gold medal.

Last, but not least, the team was able to draw inspiration from their paraplegic teammate Elsa Lalonde who was called on to make five serves in the tournament and never missed. This is Lalonde's second gold medal.

Members of the Gilsèle-Lalonde Titans pose for a team pucture after winning the school's fourth straight senior girls 'AA' OFSAA volleyball championship. Team roster includes Sabrina Roy, Élyse Patry, Émie Gaboury, Olivia Witteveen, Martine Doucet, Jessica Bassolé, Jessika Bolduc, Devon Voneicken Bursey and Elsa Lalonde. Coach Marcel Martin. Assistant coaches Sheila Roy, Mireille Belcourt and Robert Mahlig. Photo supplied

(Posted:10 a.m., March 7)

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