After a three-year absence, the Langley Christian Lightning have reclaimed the junior girls district volleyball title.
The Lightning did so with an impressive and efficient straight sets victory over the Langley Fundamental Titans on Nov. 7 at the Langley Events Centre field house.
The Titans had won the previous three junior girls district titles (2010, 2011 and 2012) while the Lightning had won the three before that.
“We figured we had a good shot at winning districts,” said Langley Christian coach Lisa Bontkes.
The Lightning were the top seed coming into the Langley playoffs, going undefeated during league play.
And in the district final, Langley Christian made quick work of their foe, winning 3-0 in straight sets.
They took the first set 25-7, won a closer one in the second, 25-21, and then ended the match with a 25-15 victory in the third set.
The team’s hallmark this season has been their cohesiveness on the court.
“They are a really close group, very supportive of one another,” Bontkes said.
They are also very familiar with one another.
“Most of them play club together and have known each other since Kindergarten,” she added.
Both Langley Christian and Langley Fundamental move on to the Fraser Valley championships, which begin this weekend.
Bontkes knows her team is in tough as they have faced many of those same teams in tournament play, where the Lightning did manage a couple of third place finishes.
The top six advance to the provincial championships and Bontkes said that is the goal for her Lightning team.
“(At this age), it is a very up and down game,” she said.
“We need to stay even keeled and not let our heads get out of the game.
“That is our biggest struggle right now.”