What is there left to say about the MEI Eagles senior boys volleyball team?
On Saturday the Eagles won the Double-A provincial banner at the Langley Events Centre, finishing off the Clarence Fulton Maroons in three sets (25-11, 25-20, 25-15) and placing the capstone on a perfect tournament and an historic 37-1 season.
MEI didn’t lose a single set in either pool or playoff play during the four-day event, and Fulton was the only opponent to even reach 20 points in a set against the blue-and-gold. The Eagles haven’t lost to a Double-A squad this season, falling only once all year to the Triple-A Kelowna Secondary Owls before getting revenge for that loss later in the season.
According to coach Jordan Geransky, this year’s MEI squad was “a perfect storm of some really special athletes. There’s a core that really knows how to compete together, and they also know how to bring the guys that are on the fringe into the core of the team.
“Whereas in their junior year it felt like we had four or five core guys, this year felt like we had 14 core guys. It was a combination of leadership, athleticism, and volleyball skill.”
The Eagles controlled the first and third set easily, and battled through some early difficulty in the second to retain the lead. Jordan Koslowsky was brilliant for his team at setter, while fellow senior Jordan Loewen and Grade 11 Kaden Gamache proved merciless on the attack.
All 14 MEI players were rotated into the game. The Eagles, who have finished in the top three in each of the last 13 provincial tournaments, are now in possession of nine championships.
Gamache, Loewen, and Levi Block were all named first-team all-stars. Koslowsky won Most Outstanding Player, while Keaton Boughen took home Most Outstanding Libero.
“As a libero you don’t get recognized very often,” said Boughen after picking up his trophy, “but it’s cool to just be behind the scenes helping your team out and doing whatever you can to keep the ball off the ground.”
This season was only Boughen’s second playing libero after switching to the position in junior volleyball. He credits his team’s success to their “community” and ability to play for each other.
“I’ll certainly miss the camaraderie this group has on the court and off the court,” said Geransky. “We talked about it before the game. [The team said] ‘We’re 14 best friends.’ All 14 really feel like they’re a tight-knit group and that impacted the way we trained and the way we played.”
Geransky also said that the word ‘love’ was even thrown around in the Eagles’ pre-game talk, admitting that “a bunch of 16 or 17-year-olds talking about how much they love each other, that’s pretty rare.
“I think we saw a lot of leaders bloom this season,” he finished, looking over his shoulder to watch his team celebrate a perfect season.