The Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal’s volleyball report for January 31

Good Wednesday morning. We’ll wrap up our hoops from last night soon, but we start this morning with our weekly look at the local girls’ club volleyball scene. This past weekend was a busy one for all of the local teams and players with Valley ties as the first regular weekend of local “Power League” play took place. Here’s some highlights from the various age groups for you.

U-18: Valley athletes competing in this age division seem to be finding themselves on some pretty good teams, if this past weekend is any indication. Two with local ties are on squads that are among the absolute best in the region.

We start with the Tacoma-based Puget Sound Volleyball Academy 17’s squad. This team features MSHS junior Hayley West, and they will be in the upcoming Platinum Division tournament featuring the best of the Seattle-area teams against the best Portland-area squads. They are currently ranked second in the U-18 age group, comprising the best U-17 and U-18 teams locally, and have a 9-1 local record. Their lone loss came on Sunday in their local nightcap to their PSVBA organizational counterparts from the U-18 side, who themselves are ranked at the top. So this Puget Sound club will be certainly a club to be paying some attention to as the season rolls on, and it’s great to see a Wildcat player as part of it.

Also, Bellevue-based Sudden Impact 18’s will also be headed to the Platinum, as they are now ranked third overall in the age group. This squad features ex-MSHS’er Patience O’Neal, and are 9-2 overall locally after a 3-1 weekend which included their lone loss of the proceedings on Sunday to West and her Puget Sound team. The Seattle-based Seattle Juniors are just outside that top six that go to the Platinum Division, now ranked eighth overall after struggling on the weekend – this team, featuring MSHS’s Zoe Gogan, went winless on the day Sunday and is now at 6-5 overall locally.

Mercer Island’s Island Thunder 18’s, with Wildcats Emma Anderson and Jessica Hanners, sits in 10th overall in the age group rankings after a 3-1 day Sunday; they now sit 9-2 overall, and right behind them is former MSHS’er Harper Click and her Sudden Impact 17’s, ranked 11th overall with an 8-2 local record; they played Island Thunder in their games Sunday with the Mercer team scoring the win.

Rounding it out, two teams representing the Northwest Juniors club from Bellevue – their 18’s and 17’s teams, featuring Mount Si athletes Annalise Jensen, Dana Dolan, Lizzie Belceto, Chloe Stewart and Emily Dann, are ranked further down in the age group, but both had fair results on the weekend and have overall local records at under .500 (3-5 for the 18’s and 5-6 for the 17’s).

U-16: The teams here are all mid-pack or lower in their rankings after this past weekend’s play, with the highlights coming from a pair of NWJ teams. Their Blue UnderArmour squad, with MSHS’ Breana Fitzgerald and Megan Underbrink, is ranked 29th overall after a 1-3 day on Saturday; they are at 6-5 overall. Also, the Grey UnderArmour squad is on a tear; they went 3-1 on Saturday and have won five of their past six local Power League contests; this team features Cedarcrest HS’s Selah Kuiken and they are now ranked 43rd in the age group.

Rounding it out, a team from Carnation-based Valley View went 1-3 on the day Saturday and they are ranked in 53rd with a 2-8 local record.

U-15: The highlight from this age group, which played Sunday, was from the NWJ’s Under Armour Grey team. This team is coached by Cedarcrest HS alum Kendall Koch and features current Red Wolve Ava Mundy. NWJG went 4-0 on Sunday, with wins over teams from Bellingham and Bremerton among the victories. and is now 6-3 overall in local play, with a current rank of 41st overall in the age group. They keep the success up and they will see their rankings improve. NWJ’s UnderArmour Blue team in this age group is the highest-ranked of the local squads in the division, ranked 22nd after this past weekend despite going 1-3 on Sunday to move to under .500 at 4-5 on the local action.

Rounding it out here, the Valley View 15’s team from Carnation went 2-2 on Sunday and is now 4-6 overall in local play, ranked in 53rd overall.

U-14: The three teams with locals in this age group all come from Snoqualmie-based Ridge Valley, and all are in the lower half of the age group standings. The highlight is from the 14’s team, which went 3-1 on Sunday and has started out the local season with a stellar 8-2 record, which has allowed them to climb a bit in the rankings, now sitting at 83rd, but certainly if their success keeps going, this ranking will definitely improve as the season rolls along. RV’s two U-13 teams sit further back in the rankings, both with overall records of under .500 on local play after this past weekend’s action.

U-12: A quick shoutout and a pat on the back as well in this segment to the Ridge Valley U-12 team, coached by MSHS volleyball coach Bonnie Foote and other Wildcat coaching staff members – they opened the season on a strong note Saturday, winning all four of their matches. With this team being a beginner-level group, it’s all about gaining confidence and learning the skills that many of them will likely see when they head to the MSHS program, so a good start to the season can only mean good things ahead for this group.

This weekend
Everyone is off this weekend, with the second regular season weekend for all of the local teams coming next weekend. The next major tournaments do not take place until President’s Day weekend, February 17-19.

This has been our weekly look at the local girls’ club volleyball scene in the Puget Sound Region. We’ll be back next Wednesday with a preview of the second weekend of local Power League play.

Rhett Workman

About Rhett Workman

Rhett Workman is the editor of the Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal. Workman is a veteran sports journalist, having covered Snoqualmie Valley sports for nearly a decade with the Snoqualmie Valley Record newspaper before starting up the SVSJ. Workman's coverage has earned the support and respect of Valley coaches, players, parents and fans, and the SVSJ continues the standard of coverage that Workman brought to the Valley Record.
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