By Jordan Ercit
Kitchener Post staff
With victory just a few points away, Sara Seiling looked like she had been here before.
But she hadn’t, at least not at the senior girls high school volleyball level.
In fact, over the course of the last 22 years, no one at her school had experienced what Seiling and her St. Mary’s Eagles teammates did Tuesday at St. Mary’s High School in Kitchener: A District 8 Athletic Association senior girls volleyball title.
The undefeated Eagles captured just the second District 8 title in school history, avenging a loss in the 2012 championship game with a 3-1 (25-21, 25-21, 20-25, 25-11) victory over Resurrection Catholic Secondary School, a program that had won two straight senior titles and 10 league trophies in total since the Eagles’ last championship crown in 1990-91.
That was the first year of District 8’s existence and well before the 17-year-old Seiling was born.
“We won (junior) in Grade 10 with the same team and that was pretty good, but I feel like this is much better,” said Seiling, who co-captains the Eagles with Sydney Greulich.
Tuesday’s volleyball victory gave the Eagles a senior sweep of the District 8 girls volleyball and boys basketball titles.
Last Friday, the Eagles made it back-to-back District 8 senior boys basketball championships with a 57-50 win over the Resurrection Phoenix, a team St. Mary’s beat by 30 or more points in the regular season.
But by no means was this one a blowout.
The teams were tied 22-22 late in the second quarter and the Eagles took a 38-35 lead into the fourth. At one point late in the game, the Phoenix cut the deficit to one before Tyrick Thompson and Jamari Stevenson hit back-to-back three-point field goals to give St. Mary’s a seven-point cushion.
Telloy Simon had 20 points to lead St. Mary’s. Patric McGlynn had 17 points, 15 rebounds and five blocks for the Phoenix as they gave the defending champs a scare, which didn’t surprise Grade 12 Eagles guard Avery Sutton.
“It’s always a battle when we play them,” Sutton said. “But we had faith in ourselves, we had faith in each other and we pulled it out.”
In the junior finals, Henoak Abara had 12 points as St. Mary’s came from behind to win their third straight District 8 junior boys basketball final, a 38-36 victory over St. Benedict.
In the junior girls volleyball final, Resurrection returned the favour against the Eagles with a 3-2 (25-13, 25-11, 19-25, 22-25, 15-7) win. The Eagles also earned a spot at the CWOSSA Quad-A Junior Classic with a 3-0 sweep of Guelph Centennial in Wednesday’s play-in game.
Resurrection’s seniors both lost their play-in games in basketball and volleyball to Guelph’s John F. Ross.
Meanwhile, the Grand River Renegades were to play Brantford’s Assumption College Thursday for a spot at this weekend’s CWOSSA Quad-A senior boys basketball provincial qualifying tournament in Guelph.
Waterloo Collegiate earned an automatic bye with a 3-0 record in local CWOSSA qualifying, including Tuesday’s 74-64 win over the Renegades. Grand River’s Jamal Murray and Waterloo’s Dani Elgadi finished with 22 points.
Eastwood and Bluevale both failed to advance.
Grand River split their two-game CWOSSA Quad-A senior girls volleyball qualifying series Tuesday with Waterloo following a 3-1 win.
As well, the Rockway Mennonite Flames swept the CWOSSA Single-A boys basketball qualifying tournament titles. The seniors advanced to the OFSAA Single-A tournament in North Bay with a 52-47 win over the Woodland Christian Cavaliers. The juniors beat Woodland as well, 51-35.
The Flames and Cavaliers girls volleyball teams were also in action Thursday during the CWOSSA Single-A tournament at Woodland Christian High School in Breslau.
The Kitchener-Waterloo Raiders junior and senior teams will compete in the OFSAA Triple-A boys basketball qualifier Friday and Saturday at St. David Catholic Secondary School in Waterloo. Games tip off at 9 a.m. Friday.
The finals start at 4 p.m. Saturday with the junior game.