Clarenville area fe­male club team pre­pared for na­tional competition

The Packet (Clarenville) - - SPORTS - BY JONATHAN PAR­SONS THE PACKET jonathan.par­sons@thep­acket.ca Twit­ter: @je­j­par­sons

With a core of four play­ers re­turn­ing from last year’s Na­tion­als competition, the 16U club team from the Clarenville area, the Clarenville Ford Elite Force, are primed for this year’s event in Water­loo, Ont.

The Force, made up of 11 play­ers from the lo­cal area and one from Grand Falls-Wind­sor, will look to com­pete at the event af­ter putting in quite a bit of hard work.

Hav­ing coached the team last year, coach Randy Letto says the tour­na­ment will be a great ex­pe­ri­ence for every­one.

“The young ones com­ing up, they’re just so ex­cited about go­ing. They can’t wait (un­til May 3). The girls that have been there last year, they’re all ex­cited for get­ting to go back and have a sec­ond shot at it,” Letto told The Packet.

He says the team has been prac­tis­ing twice a week since Jan­uary to get ready in ad­di­tion to play­ing with school teams.

“And off the court it’s a tremen­dous amount of work. Co­or­di­nat­ing every­thing from ho­tels to bussing to flights and every­thing else. It’s a big un­der­tak­ing but all worth it in the end,” said Letto.

He also men­tioned they’ve got­ten a ton of com­mu­nity sup­port and spon­sor­ship to go to this tour­na­ment. Jenna Letto is one of the play­ers re­turn­ing to Na­tion­als for the sec­ond year.

She told The Packet she’s very ex­cited to go back to the na­tional event be­cause she had a great time last year.

“It’s re­ally ex­cit­ing, we’ve been prac­tis­ing re­ally hard and we’re hop­ing it will show off,” she said.

She says last year she was play­ing against a lot of play­ers who were older than her. Now that she’s go­ing to be play­ing against her age group, she’s hop­ing it will be eas­ier and the team will do bet­ter.

“There’s four of us that are go­ing again for our sec­ond year. So I think it will help the team and ev­ery­body will be more calm.”

The 16U fe­male vol­ley­ball Na­tion­als are May 4-7 in Water­loo, Ont.

JONATHAN PAR­SONS PHOTO

The Clarenville Ford Elite Force 16U fe­male club vol­ley­ball team. Front row, from left to right: Emma Tucker, Emily Philpott, Ruby Ver­ster, Laura Cole, and Rachel An­drews; and back: as­sis­tant coach Sab­rina An­drews, Emma Squibb, Han­nah Ride­out, Abi­gail Asukwo, Claire Or­gan, Am­ber Vardy, Jenna Letto, and coach Randy Letto. Miss­ing from photo: Han­nah Pey­ton.

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