Volleyball Nationals

February 9th, 2011

Vancouver Island University  Athletics Department is thrilled to announce that the 2012 CCAA Women’s Volleyball National Championships will be held here at VIU in March 2012 !!


The best eight women’s volleyball teams in Canada will compete for gold in 2012 and the Vancouver Island University  Mariners are  going for gold with the addition of some of the best talent around !!

Joining the Mariners for next season are Alyssa Wolfe, Leanna Gildersleeve, Jennifer Clayton, and Tylar Turbull.

Alyssa Wolfe is a 5foot 9 power hitter from Surrey. Alyssa has been an all-star for the past four years with her Earl Marriott Mariners. During that time she has received the female athlete of the year award in her grade 8,9,10 and 11 years. She led her team to a Bronze medal finish in this year’s AAAA high school girls Provincials. Alyssa plays for the Seaside Volleyball Club. Her club team has been a power house in BC and across Canada. The team won the U16 Club Provincials and went on to win Nationals that same year. As a U17, Alyssa’s Seaside team won the Provincial title for the 2nd straight year and placed 4th at Nationals where she was awarded a 1st team all-star.  This past summer Alyssa, at age 17, was a starting power hitter for the U18 Provincial indoor team that captured the Bronze medal at the NTCC’s in Winnipeg. In 2009, Alyssa was a Provincial team member for both beach and indoor.   Alyssa is a very dynamic and powerful power hitter. One of the things that caught the attention of the VIU Mariner’s coaching staff was her combination of offensive ability matched with her ball control and defense.  “Alyssa is a complete player.  She has a lot of power in her hitting and her jump serve. What impressed me the most was her passing and her defensive ability. I believe Alyssa will be an impact player right away for us,” explained VIU Head Coach, Shane Hyde.  “Alyssa reminds me of former CCAA Player of the Year and VIU star Stephanie Bolin.  We are extremely excited to have a player of Alyssa’s caliber join our program,” added Hyde.

Leanna Gildersleeve is a 5 foot 11 outside hitter. Leanna is no stranger to the Canadian College Athletic Association. After her high school and club career Leanna headed out to Alberta where she played two years for the Grant McEwen Griffins. During her time there she led her team to a National Silver medal (2009) where she also received a player of the game for the National final as well as a conference all star. In her rookie season with the Griffins (2009) she led her team to an ACAC bronze medal and led the conference in service aces. She played club for BCO where in 2004 she won both the BC title and the National title. Leanna has also represented team BC in 2006 and 2007. “I have had the opportunity to watch Leanna play in a pressure situation, in the 2009 National CCAA final. She was a very intense player with a lot of offensive power. We are losing 3 experienced power hitters next year so Leanna will be a very valuable player for us,” explained Coach Hyde.  

Jennifer Clayton is another transfer from the Alberta College Athletic Conference. Jenn is a 6 foot outside hitter currently playing for the King’s University College Women’s Volleyball Team. Jenn is in her 3rd year of college volleyball. During her career she has played almost all positions.  During Jenn’s three years at Kings she has received numerous individual awards including the King’s University Women’s Volleyball MVP, as well as an ACAC All Conference. Jenn’s experience will be a major asset for the team next year with the departure of the current group of Mariner outside hitters. Jenn calls Calgary home and grew up playing for her Calgary Christian High School.  “We are very excited to have someone of Jenn’s caliber transfer to our team. From what my players tell me she is a very hard worker and a very skilled hitter, just what we’re always looking for,” remarked Coach Hyde.


Tylar Turnbull is a 6 foot Middle Blocker from Port Coquitlam, BC. Tylar is regarded as one of the top 10 recruits in the 2011 recruiting class. She played her high school volleyball for Riverside Secondary where they were a powerhouse all season long capturing the AAAA High school Provincial Silver Medal. During the Provincials Tylar was awarded a 1st team All-Star and was the runner up to the MVP of the tournament. This past High School season Tylar was awarded the MVP at the Fraser Valley District Championships as well as numerous all-stars throughout the year. In 2008 and 2009 her club Volleyball team captured the District Gold medals and went on to a Provincial silver and bronze respectfully. In 2007 Tylar received the Silver Medal at the National club Championships. 2009 her team received the Bronze medal at the Western Elite Championships. During the AAAA high school championships VIU’s coach Hyde had an opportunity to see Tylar in action and he was very impressed. “I loved the way she played! She played with intensity and was a driving force in their team’s success. Tylar was very rounded with strong offence and a dynamic block. The fact that Tylar played middle but continued to stay in the back row to pass and play defense shows what type of an athlete she is,” explained Hyde.

 Coach Hyde summed up the signing of these 4 athletes as well as the two previous signings. “I am very excited to have such an amazing group of athletes join our squad for next year. We have a great mix of youth and veterans joining our club. Our two high school recruits (Alyssa Wolfe, Tylar Turnbull) are both in the top 10 players in the Province. The 4 transfer players will add immediate talent and experience to a team with a solid core returning. This is the perfect scenario for a program that is hosting a National Championship next year. We will have a larger team but with an increased schedule of 24 matches next year instead of 14 this year playing time will not be an issue.”

This story also featured on the Island Sports Network