The sun is shining, the hip hop’s blaring. You’ve got beach sand on your feet.
It’s so cool to be a kid in summer.
And it’s especially so if you’re among the best beach volleyball players in the province.
“In beach, if you want to go far, you have to have the passion,” says Gorrell, whose father Miles was an all-star lineman for five CFL teams between 1978 and 1996.
Sanderson, already a member of the provincial squad in her age group, has Olympic dreams herself and expresses an unabashed passion for the game.
“I love how it’s such a combined effort, like you’re so together with your team, yet you all have a little chance at the spotlight as an individual,” she says. “It’s also very goal oriented . . . and I just love the atmosphere — everyone has the same kind of drive and determination.”
But they’re already gelling as a team, Hall says, and becoming BFFs to boot.
“I think if it weren’t for volleyball I wouldn’t know how to do school as well as I do,” she says. “I think it teaches me how to stay organized. It teaches you for sure that you need to get things done.”
“The only way they can be competitive is playing those full-day tournaments,” she says.
For Hall, 30, her Ontario Games experience launched a lifelong love of volleyball and athletic competition.
“The first time I ever actually played really competitive volleyball was in the Summer Games,” Hall says. “It got those competitive juices flowing and I wanted to keep doing it. It hooks them, the Summer Games are awesome for that.”
Sanderson, Gorrell and Hall are among 3,400 athletes, coaches and officials who have gathered in Toronto this week for the Games, which conclude Sunday.