OKM Huskies volleyball

The OKM Huskies senior girls volleyball team poses at the recent UBC tournament.

The OKM Huskies wasted little time getting back into game shape now that B.C. high school volleyball is back after 18 months without competition.

The Okanagan Mission Secondary senior girl’s team won bronze at the UBC Invitational tournament over the weekend in Vancouver.

The 20-team tournament featured some of the province’s projected powerhouses.

The Huskies, who moved into the top Quad-A division this season, finished their first day of play 1-2, with the last game of the night against a strong squad from Handsworth Secondary, eventually losing to them in a three-set nail-biter. In second-day playoff play, the Huskies upset a strong Dover Bay team in another tight three-set match to advance to the semifinals in the gold division.

Seniors Steffi Drasdo and Brooklyn Domeij, alongside junior Grace Blaskovits, started to connect from setters Shea Berisoff and Anna Vonkrosigk, both of whom chipped in with kills from the right side all weekend.

“It’s really hard to single out any one player this past weekend, as all athletes saw court time in each match and played multiple positions,” coach Rob Steciuk said. “This was a weekend about growth not about wins.”

OKM lost their second playoff match to the eventual gold division winner, South Delta Secondary, in yet another three-set thriller to set the stage of a rematch versus Handsworth in the bronze medal match.

The Huskies outplayed Handsworth in a solid two set victory to win bronze.

“Perhaps the biggest surprise of the weekend was senior Bella Filipenko stepping into the defensive specialist position (libero) on the second day and playing at a high level. Bella made a significant difference for us,” Steciuk said.

“The team’s goal was to finish in the top eight, so a bronze medal was a bonus.”

The Huskies are back on the road next weekend in Langley at a Trinity Western University tournament.