Comox Valley volleyball product Carly Gunter is in her fourth year with the WolfPack women’s team at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops.
The team is coming off a sweep over the University of Winnipeg Wesmen in Manitoba, bumping its Canada West record to 4-4.
The Pack had also swept the MacEwan University Griffins in straight sets to open the season, but lost to the Brandon University Bobcats and then the nationally ranked UBC Thunderbirds. This weekend, TRU hosts the University of Manitoba Bisons in their final two matches before the Christmas break.
“I think that we have a lot of talent on the team this year and are working towards putting it all together on the court,” said Gunter, 21, who plays libero. “Brandon was a step up from MacEwan. They had a big block that we were up against. UBC was a really good matchup for us. We put up some tight sets that could have gone either way. We just need to work together better as a team and I think we will find success this season.”
Though she has yet to start this year, Gunter is happy with working her hardest and making the best of any chances she gets on the court.
Gunter hails from Courtenay, and graduated from Vanier Secondary, where she was a setter with the volleyball team. In Grade 12, her squad won the Island championships. She switched to libero her first year at TRU.
“The team didn’t need any more setters and I really wanted to play so I ended up making the position switch,” said the two-time U Sports academic all-Canadian. The honour recognizes varsity athletes who maintain an average of at least 80 per cent during the academic year.
“Carly is a great girl and a very positive person on our team,” head coach Chad Grimm said. “She is libero but also comes in to serve and play as a defensive specialist. Carly is also involved in our leadership group, so it is great to have that positive influence on our team as well.”
Gunter is in the business administration program, majoring in human resources. After graduating, she hopes to travel, and to find a job in her field.
She isn’t the first Gunter to play volleyball at TRU. Older brother Brad was a standout player with the men’s team. He has since become a member of the Canadian men’s squad, and plays on a professional team in Poland.
“My brother has been a really big influence on me and shown me what it takes to play at a very high level,” Carly said. “It is great to get to watch him represent Canada on the international stage.”