Looking back on a successful mixed tournament last month, Merritt’s Volleyfest organizers are gearing up for their ladies tournament at the end of April. The recent Mixed Volleyfest took place from March 31 to April 2, and saw 42 teams compete across four different levels of play. 

Participants of this year’s tournament were undoubtedly excited for its post-pandemic restriction return, with Volleyfest attracting hundreds of players from across the province to the Nicola Valley for a weekend of competition, sportsmanship, and fun.

“There were some really great games, and some incredible volleyball happening throughout the week-end,” said Angela Russell, an organizer with Volleyfest. 

“I put out a survey to teams to determine what participants thought about the tournament, and how we can improve for future tournaments, and I was so happy to get nothing but positive feedback!”

The weekend of high octane fun featured five divisions for volleyball enthusiasts to choose from – three competitive, and two recreational. While local teams were relegated to one division as far as placing, they dominated the ‘Rec B’ category. Full results from the weekend are as follows: 

Comp 1:

1st place: Most Fun (Lower Mainland)

2nd Place: Pancakes (Kelowna)

Comp 2A:

1st Place: Murderous Plush Toys (Kelowna)

2nd Place: Old Balls (Kamloops)

Comp 2B:

1st Place: Dive Hard (Kelowna)

2nd Place: Social Dinkers (West Kelowna)

Rec A:

1st Place: Hit Faced (Kamloops)

2nd Place: Savages (Hope)

Rec B:

1st Place: We showed Up (Merritt)

2nd Place: Hit it and Quit It (Merritt)

Games were played throughout the weekend at the Nicola Valley Institute of Technology, Merritt Secondary School, and former Coquihalla Middle School gymnasiums. Saturday night featured a social event at the Civic Centre, which Russell said most teams attended. A local women’s hockey team, the Krushers, organized the event’s bar, and a number of fire department volunteers offered safe rides home for attendees.

“It seems that everyone was glad we were back in action after COVID, and they were so grateful to be able to get together and play the sport they all love,” added Russell.

Plans are well underway for Ladies Volleyfest, taking place from April 28 to 30 in the Nicola Valley. The event is set to be a similar success, already drawing in a high number of teams and garnering attention in Merritt and beyond. 

“We are looking forward to the Ladies Volleyfest tournament, happening April 28 to 30. I currently have 37 teams registered for that tournament, again in 4 different divisions.”

For more information on Volleyfest, visit www.merrittvolleyballassociation.org/volleyfest.