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  • 30 Sep 2016 12:51 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    BCO Alumni at 2016 CIS Championships

    Congratulations to the Toronto Varsity Blues and BCO grad Denise Wooding (2011), player of the gold medal match and tournament all star, for their 1st ever CIS Gold Medal in program history.

    Congratulations also to UBC Okanagan Heat and BCO grads Katie Wuttunee 2011), tournament all star, Emily Oxland (2012)  and Michelle Jakszuk (2013), for the Bronze Medal at their 1st ever appearance in the CIS Championship.

    Any finally, congrats to the UBC Thunderbirds and BCO grads Alessandra Gentile (2013), Sam Patko (Player of the Game, 2014) and Katie Crawford (2011), for their 4th place finish.

  • 30 Sep 2016 12:49 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Provincials Round-Up

    Congrats to all of our BCO teams on a very successful provincials; good luck to 16U at Nationals this weekend!
    18U Girls
    Elite - Division 1 Tier 1 Gold
    Black - Division 1 Tier 1 Bronze
    16U Girls
    Black - Div 1 13th
    White - Div 2 5th
    Red - Div 2 14th
    15U Girls
    Black - Div 2 4th
    Red - Div 3 Silver
    15U Boys
    Black - Div 1 8th
    Red - Div 1 17th
    14U Girls
    Onyx - Div 1 Silver
    Fire - Div 1 16th
    Storm - Div 2 9th
    13U Girls
    Pride - Div 1 15th
    Platinum - Div 2 Bronze
    Blast - Div 3 6th

    13U Boys

    Black - Div 1 10th


    Best 18U Provincials...Ever!

    18U Black won Bronze and Elite won Gold at BC Provincials April 17, for the best finish by BCO in the history of the club! Also congrats to Season All-Stars (Kiera Van Ryk, Nicola Ros, Gabby Attieh, Mikayla Funk, and Danika Ahac) and Tournament MVP, Kiera Van Ryk!

  • 30 Sep 2016 12:46 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    [March 2016] BCO Earns Back to Back Super Series Wins

    On March 6, 18U Elite finished on top of the Volleyball BC Super Series, continuing BCO's 2016 Super Series streak! Black finished strong tied for 5th.


     [February 2016] 18U Black Wins Nanaimo Super Series

    18U Black fought their way to the top spot at the 18U Nanaimo Super Series on Feb. 21!

  • 28 Nov 2015 5:57 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Tryouts can be nerve-wracking, so we asked some of our BCO family who have had some very successful tryouts for some tips. Hint: not one of their tryout tips has anything to do with not making mistakes!  Your evaluators know that not every pass or set will be perfect – that’s how volleyball goes. What they’re curious about is how you react to these imperfections to make sure the next one is a little better.

    Don’t compare yourself to other players or try to figure out what the coach is thinking. You will give yourself the best chance of making the team if you just play hard and enjoy! – Denise Wooding, BCO Grad 2011, University of Toronto libero, 2015 OUA East Libero of the Year

    Look at the coach when they are talking to you! And stand out by your work ethic. Put max effort into every drill even if it's something your not comfortable in, get comfortable being uncomfortable!

    Always do the demos!!!!!!!  - Devon May, BCO Grad 2013, SFU left side

    Don't forget to smile! – Jayme Bratsberg, BCO Grad 2014, SFU libero

    My mom made me wear a bright red shirt, as if a 6'3 grade 10 didn't stick out already. I would try my hardest and be friendly to everyone!!! It's a team sport after all – Katie Wuttunee, BCO Grad 2011, UBC Okanagan middle, 2014 Canada West All-Star

    Be coachable! If a coach asks you to try a new technique make sure you do! Also always put 100% effort into every drill! – Danielle Curtis, BCO Grad 2011, SFU setter

    Be the most positive on the court because you could be the worst player but they might take you if you have the right attitude and work ethic – Jen Johnstone, BCO Grad 2011, former Guelph University middle

    Relax, have fun and work your hardest! – Kendra Finch, BCO Grad 2015, Thompson Rivers University left side

    Be loud, always run from drill to drill or from drills to water, don't worry about what other people in your position are doing just be yourself! The most important thing is to be aggressive and have fun :) – Shae Harris, BCO Grad 2015, Seattle University setter, 2015 Canadian National B Team

    Be competitive!! And wear basketball shorts. – Rhiannon Patterson, former BCO & VCCE Coach, former Capilano University right side

    No matter what age you are bubble kneepads are the way to go and will always impress coaches – Dayna Kern, BCO Grad 2015, Tulane University middle

    Go for every ball! – Kate Lonergan, BCO Grad 2012, former University of Toronto libero

    Be super loud (with intention don't just yell for no reason) and be a leader! Listen to instructions and be the first to set up the drills when you're asked – Anna Price, BCO Grad 2015, UBC left side

    Volunteer for demos. – Katie Crawford, BCO Grad 2011, UBC libero

    Always listen to the coaches and volunteers when they are speaking or giving instruction and especially when they are giving you feedback. Work hard, play with determination, and smile! – Meghan Koven, BCO Grad 2015, Capilano University left side

    You can’t control what the evaluators write down. What you can control is what you do, so focus on the little things. Stop your feet before you pass and finish every set with even hands. – Wes Webb, BCO 18U Elite Associate Head Coach

  • 23 Nov 2015 5:11 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    At our November Board Meeting, a number of key decisions regarding the organization of our club were discussed.  The Board of Directors has approved a number of paid positions to ensure the long-term viability of BCO Volleyball.  While our club has managed to operate well in the past on the reliance of volunteers, increasing demands in relation to administrative tasks as well as the implementation of Development Camps and the Beach Program has resulted in BCO becoming a 12-month a year operation.  


    BCO Club Organization 2015/2016




    John McGowan


    Mike Rockwell


    Jane Corrigan


    Shannon Graham

    Tony Laurita

    Trina Hewlett

    Richard Price

    Linda Wolverton


    Mike Rockwell

    Athlete Development

    Alan Ahac

    Director - Club Operations*

    Deb Janzen

    Operations Assistant*

    Suzy Koven

    Social Media Coordinator*

    Mika Janzen


    Kirsten Bell

    Facilities Coordinator**

    Arlene Murdock

    Club Head Coach*

    Dan Huzar

    Technical Development Committee

    John McGowan

    Dan Huzar

    Alan Ahac

    Rob Gowe

    Tony Laurita


    As this is the first year that we are implementing these paid positions, the Board of Directors is committed to conducting a review at the end of the season and making any adjustments to the list of positions as required.

    Positions with an * are paid positions for the 2015/2016 season.

    All team coaching and manager staff are volunteer positions.

    Club Fees 2015-2017

    The Board of Directors also passed a motion to increase club fees over the next two seasons.  These fee increases are necessary in order to cover a number of administrative cost increases as well as to support the creation of the new club positions.

    · Volleyball BC and Volleyball Canada membership fee per user has increased.

    · Volleyball BC tournament fees have increased for all age groups including for Regionals and Provincials.

    · New club structure.

    · Administration costs (website & registration system, legal & accounting for CRA requirements).

    14U Girls

    15U Girls

    16U Girls

    17/18U Girls

    2016 Season





    2017 Season






    Note:  As boy’s teams do not always follow the same season structure/plan as the girl’s teams, fees for these teams will be confirmed upon the head coaches confirmation of season structure and approved by the BCO Board.


    John McGowan


    BCO Volleyball Club

  • 04 Oct 2015 1:44 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    As we are gearing up for the 2015/2016 club volleyball season, we are pleased to announce our incoming President, John McGowan.  McGowan enters the Presidential role with an impressive resume and history with BCO, most recently as an Assistant Coach with the 2015 18U Elite team.  Currently, he is the District Principle for the North Vancouver School District.  He has been an educator on the North Shore for over 20 years and has coached volleyball at the high school and club level for as many years.  McGowan began teaching in the early 90's and spent 15 years as Secondary School Vice Principal and Principal before moving to the Board Office.  We're excited for what the new season will bring, and read on below for his message to the club.

    President's Statement

    It is my true honour to take on the role of President of the BCO Volleyball Club.  After spending a year working with Mike Rockwell, our outgoing President, my hope is to maintain the legacy established by Mike and Neil (Sulkas) of BCO being one of the most recognized volleyball clubs in Canada.  

    BCO was established to give young athletes on the North Shore the opportunity to play volleyball beyond playing at school.  Over the years, the club has developed and expanded to support not only our local young athletes, but to provide high level training and competition for players from across the Lower Mainland.  This model has seen tremendous success Provincially and Nationally culminating with our 18U Elite team winning Provincial and National Gold Medals last year.  Each year, a number of our graduating athletes are also able to continue playing volleyball at the post-secondary level.  Please take a look at our Alumni page to see a partial and always updated list.  

    More importantly are the positive life experiences we try to provide to each of our BCO athletes.  We hope that each of them will know what it means to be part of the BCO family and that their time with our club will help them develop the attributes and traits to help them find success and happiness in their lives.  

    With the addition of our Camp program over the past couple of years, we want to continue to support the development of volleyball on the North Shore.  This program has allowed us to introduce the sport to young girls and boys at a much younger age than in the past.  We have also started a Beach program, opening up this exciting version of the sport to our local athletes.

    Finally, I want to thank all of the athletes, parents, coaches, and individuals who have been part or are currently part of our club.  This club is testament to each of you. The fact that it has been in existence since 1978 demonstrates to me that we have created an organization that provides an important and critical part of the North Shore community.  


    John McGowan


    BCO Volleyball Club

  • 29 Sep 2015 9:27 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Last weekend at the AGM, we happily announced three additions to the BCO Board or Directors: a warm welcome to Linda Wolverton, Dick Price, and Tony Laurita! Although, "welcome" doesn't quite seem to be the right word as these three have already contributed so much to our club over the years.  

    Linda Wolverton

    Linda returns to BCO after leaving the Board in 2012 when her daughter, Hannah, graduated after 5 years of playing with BCO.  During her time off, Linda focused on her three sons' athletic pursuits, lending her insight to rugby and soccer.  This year we've finally managed to convince Linda to come back to BCO and the land of dry, warm indoor sports and games that aren't (usually) played in the rain.  In all seriousness, we are grateful to have her grounded parent perspective back on the BCO Board of Directors.

    Richard Price

    Richard is a professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of British Columbia and has previously worked on a project under the UBC President's Office to attract top Canadian athletes to CIS schools rather than the NCAA (USA).  He also has an extensive basketball background as a player at the University of Alberta and a coach at the high school level for boys and girls.  If Richard's last name is ringing a bell, it might be because his daughter, Anna, wrapped up her 5 years with BCO on the 2015 18U Elite team.  She currently plays for the UBC Thunderbirds, but we are very happy that Richard has agreed to join our Board of Directors and keep a Price at BCO.

    Tony Laurita

    Speaking of 18U Elite, our third addition to the Board of Directors is one of last year's 18U Elite Assistant Coaches, Tony Laurita.  Tony is a teacher at Burnaby North Secondary and served as a long time director on the BC School Sports Volleyball Board until we snagged him for the BCO Board.  He is renowned in the BCO 18U community for his creative scorekeeping skills during practice. His two daughters, Jenna and Kiera, played at BCO; Tony brings the coveted combination of coach and parent input and we are lucky to have him.

    Although we are excited to welcome the new additions, we unfortunately must say goodbye to Nina Hoppe as she steps down from the Board of Directors.  Thank you for all of your tireless work with our boy's programs!

  • 13 Sep 2015 9:27 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    A popular saying these days is to ‘stay in your lane’.  In my experience, it’s always been used jokingly in a meme or as a lighthearted negotiation in an Instagram comment war.  I never really thought much about what those five words actually meant.  Recently I began thinking.


    With so many camps and academies and teams and practices, there’s a fair amount of volleyball to go around on the Lower Mainland  As a result, there’s a fair amount of pressure to make sure you go to the ‘right’ camps and play on the ‘right’ teams.  September seems to be a time of decisions - which sports to play, which teams to play for, which things to cut out.  How do you decide? You stay in your lane.


    Yes, if you want to be great you need to make sacrifices.  Yes, if you are going to be the best in the club, province, or country, you will need to take extra opportunities to get reps outside of normal practice.  No, there is no defined list of sacrifices or opportunities to be successful.  No, you are not going to be a failure if you don’t take every single opportunity.  No, you are not going to get cut from a team because you didn’t go to a camp.  Yes, you will get cut from a team if you don’t make every rep  matter, whether it’s on the court or in the weight room.


    What it really comes down to is commitment.  For some, that commitment is signing up for every camp and never missing a practice.  For others, that commitment is subtler.  It’s always being the sweatiest at practice.  It’s late nights or early mornings alone in the weight room.  It's being that teammate that everyone wants to share their successes with as much as they want a hug from in their failures.  I’m not saying one way is better than another, or even that there is a divide - that’s kind of the whole point of this post.  Just because everyone else is taking one path doesn’t mean that’s the right one for you. You do you. At the end of the day, you're the one who has to see your commitments through; in my experience I've enjoyed, and been far more successful in, the things I do because I want to much more than the ones I do because I feel like I'm supposed to.  Stay in your lane.


    “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life” – Steve Jobs

  • 01 Sep 2015 7:36 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Even though the calendar says summer doesn’t end until the middle of September, it always feels like September 1st should be the first day of fall. Maybe it’s because school’s going back, Vancouver has reclaimed its title of Raincouver with a vengeance, or maybe I’m the only one who feels like this. Either way, here are some highlights from BCO's summer of success.


    Alumni at the Senior Women’s National Team TryoutsIn May, Volleyball Canada held an open tryout to select the Senior Women’s National B Team.  This team trains with the National A team for a month, playing an integral role in preparing the squad for international competitions and Olympic qualifiers.  The tryout drew national team hopefuls and future Olympic dreamers from across the country, including 5 BCO athletes.  18U’s Shae Harris, Sarah Chase, Tessa May, and Dayna Kern headed straight to Winnipeg after winning Gold at Club Nationals in Calgary.  Joined by 2012 alumnus (18U National 4th Place finisher) and current SFU libero, Alison McKay, the girls went through a grueling 4-day tryout complete with two-a-days and fitness testing.

    We should mention/toot our own horn that your average (or even above average) high-school players are way out of their league at anything Senior National Team related, so even just keeping up at the tryout was a feat in itself. 

    At the end of the tryout, the news started trickling back to Vancouver that our BCO players absolutely crushed it.  In fact, three of them were offered one of nine available spots on the squad. Harris, Chase, and McKay were officially one GIANT step closer to the National A Team and possibly Olympic dreams.

    Of course, participating in any iteration of the Senior National Team sounds like a no-brainer, but I think it’s important to mention the sacrifices these athletes (and so many more) have made in their volleyball careers for the opportunity.  McKay commuted to play with BCO from Port Coquitlam, essentially spending the same amount of time getting to practice as she did actually practicing. Chase packed up her life at the ripe old age of 16 to move from Campbell River to North Vancouver to train with BCO, completely uprooting herself from her family and friends to chase the dream (oooh was that a pun? I’ll let you be the judge.).  Harris, a native North Vancouverite, was slated to be Carson Graham Secondary’s co-Valedictorian this year – an honour she had to forego to stay in Winnipeg and train with the National Teams.  These kids aren’t joking around, but I guess that’s why they were selected and why we’re so very proud of them.


    Myeloma Fundraiser Match | There are two rules to trash talking:

    1. Don’t say anything you can’t back up

    2. Always follow Rule #1

    Back at one practice in April, resident trash-talker/2015 18U Elite Coach, Dan Huzar, broke all the rules and told 18U Elite right side/ridiculously good beach volleyball player, Nicole McNamara, that he could beat her and her twin sister in a beach volleyball match.  Always up for a “challenge”, Nicole agreed and Dan somehow roped 18U Black Coach/actual beach volleyball player, Wes Webb, into being his partner.  Next thing we knew, Volleyball BC had graciously agreed to let us use the feature court before the annual Clearly Open and the event would be a fundraiser for Myeloma Canada.  It was a legit thing.  Dan was legit wishing he followed Rules #1 and #2.

    There was a lot of hype leading up to the July 9th face off, and the match didn’t disappoint.  We raised just under $2400 for Myeloma Canada, convincingly exceeding our $2000 goal. Spoiler alert: the twins took the match in a generous 3 sets, but I think it’s safe to say it was a win all around!  Relive the full match here, including Dan utilizing his medical time out and some peer-pressured induced skyballs.

    PS Nic & Megan went on to win the pro division of the Clearly Open that weekend (for the second year in a row)...maybe a result of their great warm-up match competition?  Or a result of their talent and hard work?  One of these options seems much  more likely...


    North Shore Beach | Neil Sulkus, BCO’s co-founder who passed away last year, was a driving force behind promoting beach volleyball on the North Shore and the implementation of the sand courts at the Lonsdale Shipyards.  As a result of Neil’s hard work, an increasing amount of indoor players have made the seasonal transition to the sand without having to drive 45 minutes to Kits Beach.

    In 2015, BCO joined up with North Shore Stars Volleyball Club to form North Shore Beach and bring beach volleyball camps to the Shipyards.  We ran training camps from June to August for beginner to advanced athletes who wanted to learn the game.  To all of the athletes who took part in our camps, I hope you’re excited for how high you’ll be able to jump in indoor.  Honestly, apart from the sunshine, great atmosphere, and other fabulous factors, transitioning from jumping on sand to hardwood floor is a great ego boost.

    In all seriousness, it was so awesome to see Neil’s dream realized.  The work he started is by no means finished, but we are well on our way.  Less than 300 days until next year’s beach season!


    Gold Streak Continues at Team BCFor a normal human, 2 gold medals at the highest level of high-school volleyball in one year seem like enough.  Dan Huzar (coach) and Betsie de Beer (player and overall angel) are not normal humans.  The two brought home the 18U Provincial and National Gold in the 2015 club season, but then continued the medal hunt with 18U Team BC.  Huzar and de Beer, along with the rest of Team BC, trained long and hard in Whistler to prepare for NTCC’s (National Team Challenge Cup) in Richmond, and Western Canada Summer Games in Wood Buffalo, Alberta.  And, if you didn’t deduce from the title of the section, they took home the gold at both, bringing them to 4 gold medals in 2015.  Move over, Michael Phelps.

    High School Prep Camps | Studies have shown that kids are rusty when they come back to school after 2 months of summer vacation.  Wait…was that a legitimate excuse to run some volleyball camps? Well, don’t mind if we do.

    While others are out buying new pencils, going over their multiplication tables, and re-reading Catcher and the Rye, we prefer to focus on the really important stuff: dusting off those court shoes.   School is obviously very important, I mean, if you didn’t go to school you wouldn’t be allowed to play high school volleyball! (But seriously kids, stay in school and study hard, that knowledge is actually useful for your future.) 

    Highlights from camps definitely included extreme bumper ball and whatever else goes down this week.  OK, maybe summer isn’t quite over yet...

  • 10 Aug 2015 8:02 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Tuesday, May 19th, 2015. For most people, it was an ordinary Tuesday. For BCO 18U Elite, it was a great day to make club history.

    It was Finals Tuesday at Calgary 2015 and the 18U National Champion Title was up for grabs.  BCO was ranked second to the hometown Dino's coming into the tournament, and finished the first two days of pool play undefeated.  The squad was cautiously optimistic, as they were also favourited to finish well at last year's Nationals until the Norwalk virus demolished any golden hopes.

    The veteran squad was no stranger to pressure situations: 4 were core players on the AAAA Provincial Champion team for Argyle Secondary, 1 earned a Silver Medal at the Youth Olympics last year, and another 4 were headed directly to the Senior Women's National Team tryouts the next day.

    The Quizzical Quarter's: BCO vs Leaside (ON 1)

    In many pre-tournament speculations, this was the favourite match-up for the National Finals. Due to some pool play upsets, we met the powerhouse club from Ontario in the quarters, which I should mention were single knockout (i.e. you lose and your season is over). Needless to say, it was a high stakes match against a very talented team.  But as they say, to be the best, you have to beat the best (or something like that).

    From the first swing in warm-up to the game-winning stuff block (more on that in a second), both sides were fired up. BCO took the first set, but Leaside took the second. In the third set, BCO's calm confidence kicked in and even though it was close, we always had the upper hand.  Then at 14-12, Kendra Finch absolutely roofed Leaside's right side hitter for the win. Literally, FTW.

    The Scary Semi's: BCO vs Shock (MB 1)

    The 2015 18U Elite squad was packed full of the sweetest, most caring kids around which made them a delight to coach.  Unfortunately, sometimes their good manners leaked onto the court and as a certain 18U Assistant Coach liked to say, "We sportsed a little too hard for the other team".  In the first set of the semi-finals, BCO probably scored 80% of the points; but most of those points went to Shock in the form of unforced errors (missed serves, hits into the net, etc.) and BCO dropped the set.

    In the second set, we began to sports for our own team a bit more but soon realized that Shock's defence was REALLY GOOD.  It was like they had a back row full of libero's. But wait, didn't 18U Elite just spend the last 3 weeks training with a back roll literally full of libero's? (Thank you Aly McKay, Brooke Halvorsen, and Jayme Bratsberg!!) We had trained for this exact moment, but it didn't mean it was going to be easy.

    We soon found ourselves down 14-8 in the must-win second set.  Head Coach Dan Huzar called the team's second and final time-out and made a pinnacle, life-changing speech akin to Al Pacino in Any Given Sunday (ok, maybe not quite that good, but it was definitely some of Huzar's best work).  This time-out was followed by the TSN Turning Point of the match: outside hitter Anna Price was subbed in and 'put the team on her back'. This superstar came in off the bench, shook it up on the court and took BCO on a 17-5 run. Shock was shocked (pun intended).

    By the third set we managed to find our groove and pulled it off 15-9. We were officially off to the National Finals, where the (mostly) Grade 12 squad would play their final high-school volleyball match on the same court Team Canada played in the FIVB World League just days before. 

    Fun fact: Last time BCO was in the 18U National final's (then coached by club co-founder Mike Rockwell), they lost to Shock's coach, Mike Burchuck.  How's that for a little sweet revenge?

    The Fabulous Final's: BCO vs Dino's (AB 1)

    It's not very often in life that you can say that the next two hours will be magical.  But, walking into the Stampede Corral for the 18U Division 1 National Finals, as cliche as it sounds, there was something special in the air. This would be the court where early mornings paid off, every drop of sweat mattered, and dreams came true.  Or, this would be the court where the most painful loss of your high school career occurred.  

    To be honest, my memory of the whole match is a blur with distinct moments of clarity.  Looking up and seeing all of our team's parents wildly cheering and BCO 18U Black with hilariously awesome signs.  Tessa May demolishing a perfectly set step from Shae Harris. Winning the first set.  Pulling ahead in the second set.  Dayna Kern absolutely hammering a 51 near the end of the set.  Nicole McNamara's superb ambidextrous skills coming in handy for the final point. 12 of the most awesome girls living one of the best moments of their lives.  Winning the first ever 18U National Title for BCO. The team huddle to end all team huddles while surrounded by the most supportive parent group. Feeling an 18U National Gold Medal hung around your neck and knowing that every rep, swing, tear, sweat, laugh leading up to this moment was completely worth it.

    Turns out knowing the next two hours of your life will be magical doesn't make them any less magical.


    Watch the final match here (fast-forward to ~1:20:00)

    Thanks to Volleyball Source for the interview with Provincial & National MVP, Team Canada National B Team setter, Shae Harris

    Thanks to the North Shore News for the "sick" article

    Thanks to Volleyball Stuff and Canuck Stuff for the awesome championship tee's

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