Energy filled the gym in Princess Margaret Secondary as the senior volleyball teams of the host Mustangs and Pen High Lakers collided for the fourth annual Cross City Volleyball Championship.
Fans pounded a lost and found container with ping pong racquets and mascots revved the crowd Tuesday night. It was the Lakers who were crowned champs.
The senior girls took the Mustangs in three sets (25-27, 25-15 and 15-9), while the boys won 25-8 and 25-19.
“It feels pretty good,” said Grade 11 Laker Klara Crowley. “We’re about to go get some poutine.”
Jeffers Fryzz made special poutine for each school.
Crowley said staying positive and focused helped them win. The massive crowd didn’t hurt either.
“You hear everybody cheering. The last few points of the set they really kept us up,” she said. “They kept the momentum going for us when we couldn’t.”
Crowley described the matchup as intense and they were nervous to start. The Mustangs were left with the feeling they could have won.
“I think we kind of beat ourselves in that one,” said Mustang co-captain Laura Ciancone. “I don’t think we were on our top game. That really kicked us in the butt.”
Mustang Mahkaila Lusch said it was fun to play in.
“I loved being cheered on,” said Lusch.
MAGGIE MUSTANG Reece Haberstock and Pen High Laker Keaton Woods meet with the ball during the fourth annual Cross City Volleyball Championship.
The victory for the boys gives the Lakers back-to-back championships, which captain Nicholas Everton said “feels awesome.”
“I was just really wanting to get the win,” said Everton, who is in Grade 12.
Everton said the Cross City Volleyball Championship provides a great atmosphere.
“I just feel like cheering my heart out when I hear all the fans cheering,” said Everton. “It’s great.
Fans were holding signs or screaming out the name of players, like Laker Jake Stokker, who made a few key kills. Some Lakers started cheering, “Let’s go Stokker.”
Everton said he never imagined a sweep, or the blowout the occurred in the first set.
“First set we came out with a lot of energy, swinging hard,” he said. “Just playing our hearts out. It was great. It showed in the score. Second set came out a bit too relaxed. They got ahead. We managed to pull it back and pull off a pretty good win.”
Despite the loss, Jivraj Grewal of the Mustangs said it was pretty fun.
“The Cross City has always been a fun match because we bring both schools and all the people show up,” he said. “You’re playing volleyball. It’s my favourite sport too next to basketball. I’d say it makes it harder with this crowd watching you.”
Follow sports editor Emanuel Sequeira on Twitter: @pentictonsports