Senior Tigers Update: November 18, 2021

While our fall sport season winds down, our Senior Volleyball Team is gearing up for their run at the AA BC Championships. This week, our Tigers are ranked #4 in BC. They are playing for the VS2S Zone Championships where the top teams qualify for the AA Provincials, held December 2-4 in Abbotsford. On day one, the Tigers defeated Collingwood 2-0, St. Pat’s 2-0, and Seycove 2-0 to reach the semi-final. YHS defeated WPGA in the semi-final and will face Notre Dame in the final. The championship game will be Thursday at Handsworth Secondary. Our team is the defending AA BC Champions having won the title in 2019. There were no Provincials Championships in 2020 due to the pandemic. Good luck!

On Friday and Saturday, November 19-20, our Senior School Swim Team will be competing at the BC Championships at Watermania in Richmond. Our Swim Team, like volleyball, is the defending AA BC Champions having won the title in 2019. There were no Provincials Championships in 2020 due to the pandemic. Good Luck swimmers!

Tryouts and organizational meetings are underway for the winter season. The winter season is quieter with fewer sports offerings.

  • Basketball: Grade 8, Junior, and Senior Teams
  • Ski Team
  • Snowboard Team

As well, YHS plans to run some casual out of season training for the following:

  • Cross-Country Running and Track
  • Field Hockey – if enough interest
  • Ultimate – if enough interest

With the return of inter-school competition, many of the long-standing athletic topics and questions will again emerge. Ask About Athletics is an opportunity to understand the athletic landscape that impacts extracurricular sport at YHS.

Question: Why does York House not offer more ‘B’ teams for students who do not make the more competitive teams?
Answer: As a lover of sport, I would like nothing more than to see every student have an opportunity to enjoy the benefits of sport. Being active and improving fitness and strength. Working with a team to celebrate successes and pick oneself up from failures. To develop resilience, grit, and perseverance. Appreciate the value of commitment, teamwork, and hard work.

The main challenges that YHS faces in offering more teams and opportunities for students include:

  • Facilities: our athletic facilities are limited and under enormous stress and pressure as our school teams, from Grade 3 to Grade 12, share one gym and turf. Rental spaces are very hard to come by in Vancouver and the times they are available typically do not work with our program. YHS is long overdue for expanded athletic facilities.
  • Human Resources: coaches are hard to find both within the YHS staff and the greater community. YHS does its best to recruit talented coaches but many of our programs are run on just a few dedicated volunteers and community coaches. Often when someone is available to coach, their own work schedules will not allow them to fulfil the coaching needs of our teams. More teams also means more administrative work organizing athletics and more bus driving. The human resources required to run a larger program have impacts far beyond just coaching.
  • Leagues: the leagues we compete in are limited in size so that a school like YHS can not enter multiple teams. Games need to be played somewhere and other schools have pressure on their facilities as well. BC School Sports (BCSS) oversees high school sports in BC. Many sports, like softball, are not high school sports and even if YHS assembled a team, there would be no schools to play. BCSS rules prevent school teams from operating in club leagues.
  • School Size: YHS has approximately 64 girls per grade. This is enough to field competitive teams for our sports but if often just a little too few to have enough students for more teams. Larger student populations in other schools allow some to offer a second team. That said, larger schools like Crofton House, Little Flower Academy, or Eric Hamber, and Lord Byng do not even offer any more teams than YHS offers. In some sports, even less.

These are a few reasons that make it difficult to run ‘B’ teams for various sports at YHS. Each year, we assess the student interest, coaching staff, and logistics and we often do consider trying to run secondary teams in some sports at some levels.

I do hope that this helps to address some of the questions I know that some parents have about our athletics program offerings and some of our limitations. Of course, all of that said, what our students achieve on the field and on the court year over year is quite remarkable. We work hard as a community to maximize our resources and build on the individual talent and determination of each of our students.

David Prissinotti
Senior Athletics Director