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Camosun Charger Mika Yamada gives a rebel yell! The first-year International student amassed a total of 41 points and 22 digs in the split against Douglas, January 4 & 5. Photo courtesy Camosun Chargers Athletics

After closing the first half of the season with a hard-fought weekend series against the nation’s #1 team VIU Mariners, the Camosun Chargers Women’s Volleyball team began the New Year facing the #2 nationally ranked Douglas College Royals in their 2019 openers on the January 4-5 weekend in New Westminster. In a great show of skill and determination, the Chargers not only forced the Royals to five full sets in their first match of the series – they finished with a huge win and demonstrated the kind of success they are capable of. The Royals came back to capture the win on the following day, but not before Camosun pushed them to four tough sets.

Fri, Jan 4             CAM 3-2 DC       16-25, 25-22, 15-25, 25-12, 15-11            BOX SCORES

Sat, Jan 5            DC 3-1 CAM       24-26, 25-15, 25-19, 25-23                         BOX SCORES

“After over a month away from league competition, we started Friday’s match showing a bit of rust, but found our groove quickly,” explains Chargers Head Coach Brent Hall. “The team had two outstanding serving matches and showed offensive prowess from the wings. We haven’t reached our peak yet this season, with seven athletes playing their best at the same time, so I expect us to keep improving over the second half of the season.“

In her first year with the Chargers, Camosun International student-athlete Mika Yamada from Sendai, Japan led the team in both matches, amassing an impressive weekend total of 39 kills (over 80 attempts for 0.363 efficiency), 2 aces and 22 digs in the battle against the nation’s #2 team! For her outstanding performance, Yamada was named the PACWEST Athlete of the Week for women’s volleyball.

Watch CHEK TV’s recent video story on Mika Yamada.

“Mika is a thrill to watch,” comments Coach Hall. “She’s a dynamic athlete who has shown consistent progress over the season to this point. Her stats show off a highly effective offensive skillset, and she put forward a fantastic all-around performance with several key serving runs and defensive efforts. She was a major contributor to our success this past weekend.”

In addition to Yamada’s exceptional performance, second-year outside hitter Maddison Yule from Powell River had a fantastic offensive match in Friday night’s victory. Enrolled in the Business Admin program at Camosun, Yule has been sidelined by an injury for several weeks but has worked hard to make a return.

“Maddie entered the match in the second set and was untouchable for the remainder,” says Coach Hall. “She marked 17 kills and one error on 23 attempts for a kills efficiency of 0.696.”

Starting the New Year on the PACWEST Women’s Volleyball League Leaders list are:

Laura Greene                                 #10 in Aces (0.43/S)

Megan Ireland                               #13 in Aces (0.41/S)

Hannah May                                  #11 in Blocks (0.31/S); #9 Aces (0.44/S)

Mychaela Roelants                       #1 in Digs (3.33/S) Top in digs for the 8th consecutive week!

Lauren Montgomery-Stinson     #12 in Kills (2.00/S)

Sydney Svicenec                            #13 in Kills (1.95/S); #12 Aces (0.41/S); #14 TOS (2.46/S)

Mika Yamada                                 #12 in Digs (2.17/S); #11 in Kills (2.13/S)

Rayelle Zacharuk                          #4 in Aces (0.57/S); #7 TOS (3.00/S)

Having taken on VIU and Douglas, the top two teams in the PACWEST, the Chargers head out on the second of three straight road trips to take on the #8 nationally ranked University of the Fraser Valley Cascades who are currently third in the conference. Camosun sits fourth in the PACWEST standings and is ranked #12 nationally.

“The top four in the PACWEST are all very competitive,” asserts Coach Hall. “I believe we are closely matched with UFV. They have proven that if we don’t play our best they are a team that can capitalize. That said, I like the way we match up against them and hope to bring two wins home with us this weekend.”

Catch the Chargers this weekend as they face the Fraser Valley Cascades in Abbotsford.  Watch the matches on the UFV Cascades webcast.

Fri          Jan 11   Women 6pm; Men 8pm

Sat         Jan 12   Women 1pm; Men 3pm