The junior girls need practice, and that’s where Rankin Inlet residents come in.

Coaches Robert Kabvitok and Holly Mercer are inviting men and women to compete in a casual volleyball tournament Nov. 22 to 28, with the aim of helping develop the junior girls team’s skills.

“The main purpose is to get the kids to develop their skills and see how a tournament feels,” said Kabvitok. “These kids are playing soccer tournaments, hockey tournaments, but they’ve never really played a volleyball tournament. After the mini-tournament, we’ll see what we have to work on with the girls.”

He said the girls will be working on their volleying, bumping, communication and serving, plus bonding as a team.

The pair of Kabvitok and Mercer have been coaching for years, though they recently took a break to spend more family time. Kabvitok is particularly proud of his past volleyball alumni who went on to compete in the Arctic Winter Games and Canada Summer Games.

“That was our goal,” said Kabvitok. “We wanted to see volleyball players representing Rankin and to have fun.”

Kabvitok found his love of coaching through his coach in junior high school.

“He was always with us and teaching us how to play,” he said. “He was true to us and that’s what I wanted to do – help kids out. I love coaching.”

He thanks the senior men’s and women’s volleyball committee for allowing the girls to use their volleyball time.

The tournament will be held Monday, Nov. 22, Wednesday, Nov. 24 and Sunday, Nov. 28 in the evenings.

To sign up, contact Kabvitok or Mercer through Facebook or find a sign-up sheet in the gym. Players are encouraged to join any night through the tournament, so long as there is space to play.

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