It’s a short list of teams from Bourne High School that qualified for this year’s fall state tournaments. Just the BHS volleyball team will be waving the purple and white flag in the MIAA postseason for the autumn of 2021.
Both the boys’ and girls’ soccer teams were close to earning their ways in via the power ranking rule, which allows all of the top 32 schools in each division, regardless of final record, to play for a chance at the championship. The BHS girls’ soccer team came painfully close to making it. Coach Rui Correia’s squad finished 34th in the Division 4 girls’ power poll, just two spots out of the field. The boys’ team was also close to the cusp, coming in at No. 39 overall. Field hockey, which played its best late in the year, came up short in the end at 41st overall in Division 4.
Bourne High’s football team finished out of the field of postseason teams as well. Unlike the other three varsity teams that missed the tournament, football will continue with a schedule that features games against other nonqualifiers.
That leaves the volleyball team to represent the Canalmen going forward, and Coach Dave Moore thinks that his team could be in it for a while. As to when they start it, though, it is still up in the air. The Lady Canalmen earned a bye through the preliminary round, claiming the No. 5 seed overall in Division 5 with a 14-5 overall record.
They await the winner of either St. John Paul II High School or Mohawk Trail. The Lions were seeded No. 28 in the field and MT is the 37 seed. The time and date of the Canalmen’s match against the winner of that game will be posted online. If SJP2 wins the game will likely be Friday, November 5, but if Mohawk is the winner expect the game over the weekend, probably on Saturday.
Coach Moore said that the team has high aspirations to live up to the legacy that the program owns. “They see it as a chance to leave their mark. We’ve been there before and we can get there again, and because we’ve been there before they can believe that they can get there again. That’s sometimes a problem as you move on, getting the team to believe that they can do it, but these girls do,” Moore said.
With a deep senior class that is long on leadership, Moore said that the pieces are in place for his team to succeed in the state tournament. The Lady Canalmen have proven themselves against some very tough teams, and have rebounded from a difficult stretch mid-season to finish strongly. Moore said that the year was certainly “topsy turvy” at times and that the team lost a few matches it probably should not have, and allowed some lesser teams to hang around in matches that could have been easier. Those trials hopefully will have the squad ready now that the matches really mean something.
“The nice thing about this team is that they’re so enthusiastic,” he said. “It’s been a while since I’ve had such good kids that are just enjoying the process. I think that we have the talent, it’s just about getting these kids to push through (the tough moments).”
Moore said that if the Canalmen bring their “A game” that he is confident that the team make a serious run in Division 5 this year. “If we’re on our game we are pretty good,” he said. The keys will be playing with aggression and confidence on offense, and putting pressure on the opposition to keep up, and also making plays on defense and being steady on that end of the floor.
“Our offense that we have can be spirited. If that’s in action we can play with the best of them,” Moore said.
BHS is led by a core of eight seniors. The captains are Emma Undzis, Emily Sullivan and Delaney Jensen. The five other seniors are Casey Manning Ally DeFalvaro, Gianna Louden, Ava Fenton and Grace Russell.