By Bob Carter
Langley — College Heights broke up the Fraser Valley’s fierce foursome Thursday night in quarterfinal AA action at the Big Kahuna BC Volleyball Championships.
The fourth-seeded Cougars from Prince George beat Langley Fundamental, last year’s runnerup, in four sets. They’ll join FV teams Pacific Academy, Langley Christian and MEI, the top three seeds, in Friday’s semifinals.
CH coach Jay Guillet said his team delivered a performance to match its confidence and the kind needed to play at the highest level.
“At this point, it’s not about the skill now,” he said, “but your will. There are seven or eight great AA teams, and you have to be willing to make three great plays to win a point. You have to be willing to make great plays the whole match.”
Ben Shand, playing the right side instead of his normal left, played well, Guillet said, as did setter Graham Walkey.
“In general, our whole team bought into the system, what’s needed to succeed at this level,” Guillet said.
He was pleased with the team’s blocking, too. “We got a lot of touches off the block.”
On Friday, the Cougars will play PA, which beat them 3-0 at the George Elliot tournament.
MEI handled another Prince George team, Duchess Park, 3-0, and advanced to play Langley Christian on Friday.
Grade 12 outside hitter Colton Loewen, last year’s MVP at Provincials, was again a swinging star and got plenty of help from fellow front row standout Carson Bargen.
“I thought our setter (Brendan Loewen) distributed really well,” Eagles coach Brad Knodel said.
MEI controlled the match nearly all the way.
“We never let them get any runs,” Knodel said. “And I was very happy with how we played their middles. We forced them to the outside — not their strength — and used our outsides, our strength.”
Langley Christian, which has a 4-1 record against MEI this year, rolled past seventh seed George Elliot, and PA defeated No. 8 McRoberts in three, winning the third 27-25.
The AA semifinals will be played on adjacent courts at 5 p.m. Friday. The spike competition will follow those two games with the AAA semis then starting at about 8:15.