The second annual Boys and Girls Club Co-ed Volleyball Tournament served up a day of fun and competition for boys and girls from different communities in the GTA.
“Last year it was a success, so we did it again,” said Patrick MacDonald, youth program coordinator at the Eastview Boys and Girls Club. “The kids hang out and build friendships with other kids. They benefit by being engaged youth to youth in a fun and competitive atmosphere.”
MacDonald, who organized and refereed today’s games, says a grant from Vital Youth two years ago made the tournament possible. So, with the grant he decided to do a tournament that brought communities together. But, he stayed away from the common sports and let the youth try something new, which was volleyball.
“We didn’t do sports like basketball and soccer because the kids already know those sports,” MacDonald said. “With volleyball we are doing something out of the ordinary. It’s competitive but at the same time still fun.”
Mario Samson from the West Scarborough Boys and Girls Club played in the tournament today for his second straight year. He said he really enjoyed seeing all the different community centres come out and play.
“Overall it’s a great tournament. It’s fun. They even supplied us food and refreshments,” Samson said. “This is only my second time doing it but, I feel it’s already becoming an annual tradition.”
Samson and his team from West Scarborough ended the tournament with a first-place finish. They dropped their first game and went undefeated the rest of the way.
“It doesn’t really matter if you win,” he said. “I do it for the love of the sport and the communities coming together to have fun.”
The Eastview Boys and Girls Club opened their doors to four teams today for the volleyball tournament. Macdonald expects the tournament to be on again next year but, hopes it will be even bigger.
“Instead of the round robin-style we have, I want to have two divisions,” he said. “So I’m hoping for more teams next year.”