Central Elgin wraps boys volleyball season on dominating victory
November 17, 2023
By Rob J. Ross
STRATFORD, Ont. - A bus ride home without a medal was not happening.
The Central Elgin Titans are WOSSAA double-A junior boys volleyball bronze medalists, after dusting the host Stratford St. Mike's Warriors in three games, winning 25-22, 25-13, 25-19, November 15 at St. Mike's secondary school.
"We wanted it and we played well and we communicated well. We dug themselves out of holes when we needed too," Titans coach Matt Deven said. "I had no voice, so the boys on the bench really had to step up for me. Talking more. They took more of that burden on their shoulders and communicated amongst themselves as oppose to me telling them where they need to go or what they need to do."
In the semifinals, London Oakridge squeezed by the Titans to advance to the gold medal match, by taking the semifinal, 22-25, 25-19, 25-18, 23-25, 15-12.
"Five very close games," Deven said. "Then it's the conversation of there's nothing worse than coming to WOSSAA, losing both games and going on that hour long bus ride home."
Central Elgin finished a top the TVRA regular season standings at 8-0, but fell in the South-East double-A final to Woodstock Huron Park in five games.
"We only lost three games all year, so definitely a successful season," Deven said. "We were very athletic to begin with and it was just fine-tuning things that we really needed to get going. We can jump. Our strength is carrying on plays. Defence is where we thrive for sure."
The Titans played in two tournaments, losing the finals to Oakridge and London Saunders.
Oakridge won WOSSAA double-A gold, defeating Huron Park, 25-15, 20-25, 25-21, 25-14.
Coach Deven returns to the high school he attended as a student athlete.
"It's good to be back," said Deven, wearing his CECI golf shirt from 2014. "I was a Titan, so it's nice to teach at my old school. We were a a good volleyball school, so it's nice to get back to WOSSAA."
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