Canada cruises to victory in NORCECA opener


OMAHA, Nebraska (September 17, 2013) - Jaimie Thibeault of Sylvan Lake, Alta., produced 14 points to lead Canada to an easy 25-14, 25-9, 25-14 victory over St. Lucia on Tuesday to open the NORCECA (North and Central America and Caribbean) Continental Championship women’s volleyball tournament.

Lucy Charuk of Delta, B.C., added eight points and Marisa Field of Kelowna, B.C., seven.  Canada scored nine service aces as well led by Kelci French of Okotoks, Alta., with three.

“It was a nice way to work our way into the tournament for sure and just focus on ourselves,’’ said Canada’s team captain Brittney Page of Vernon, B.C. ’’That was our biggest goal going into this was just to respond every time and focus on ourselves and what we’ve practiced.”

Canada is in Group C with St. Lucia and Puerto Rico.  On Monday, Puerto Rico defeated St. Lucia in straight sets.  Puerto Rico and Canada will battle for top spot in the Group on Wednesday night.  The first place team gets a bye to the semis while second place must play in the quarterfinals on Thursday.

“We were a little nervous the whole game, especially the younger players,’’ said Canada’s head coach Arnd Ludwig.  I think we’ve put that behind us and now we’re looking forward to the next match. I think our block is usually a little better. We did a few things with the block that I didn’t like. I think our serving and attack can improve a little as well.”

In Group A, Costa Rica dropped to 0-2 losing a five-set heartbreaker to Trinidad and Tobago (1-1).  T&T lost Monday to the Dominican Republic.  In Group B, the U.S. swept Mexico on Monday.  Cuba played the Mexicans later Tuesday.

The NORCECA competition occurs every two years. In its last appearance in 2011, Canada finished sixth overall. Canada is ranked 23rd in the FIVB Senior world rankings.

The winner of the tournament automatically qualifies to the 2013 FIVB Grand Champions Cup in Japan, Nov. 12 to 17. The U.S. team won the event in 2011 in Puerto Rico, and they are currently ranked #2 in the world – the top ranked team at this event.

Canada’s Roster (listed with team and hometowns)

Opposite Hitters:

Lisa Barclay - University of British Columbia (Brandon, MB)

Brittney Page - Barbar D'X-Elles (Belguim) (Vernon, BC)

Outside Hitters:

Marie-Pier Murray-Methot - Montichiari Volley Femminile (Italy) (Quebec City, QC)

Tabi Love - Caguas Criollas (Puerto Rico) (Dauphin, MB)

Shanice Marcelle - University of British Columbia (Victoria, BC)

Dana Cranston - Colorado State University (Fort St. John, BC)

Middle Blockers:

Jaimie Thibeault, E.S. Cannet Rocheville (France), (Sylvan Lake, AB)

Marisa FIeld - Istres Ouest Provence (France) (Kelowna, BC)

Lucy Charuk - ZOK Split 1700,(Croatia) (Delta, BC)


Jennifer Lundquist - Montana State University (Surrey, BC)

Kelci French - Trinity Western University, (Okotoks, AB)


Janie Guimond - Kopenicker Sport Club (Germany), (Becancour, QC)

Live scoring and webcast info to be available at: