Aregion infamously known for eight months of rain a year doesn't sound like a breeding ground for beach volleyball talent, but Dan Caverly has bucked the Wet Coast trend.
The 22-year-old Coquitlam native copped gold in beach volleyball at the recently-held Canada Games alongside teammate Ben Chow, after rolling over Team Ontario in the finals via a three-set win (21-18, 15-21, 15-12).
The victory caps off a banner year for the Port Moody Secondary grad, who also won B.C. gold alongside his Capilano College teammates in late February.
"I don't feel like I'm playing that much better, but I've had a lot of success this year," he said. "I'm not sure what it is, but everything has come together. It's pretty awesome."
The Caverly-Chow combo ran roughshod over their opponents for much of the tournament, which took place in Sherbrooke, Que.
They posted a 5-0 record through the round robin with wins over Newfoundland/Labrador, Alberta, Quebec, New Brunswick and the Northwest Territories, conceding 120 points during those games, while scoring 213.
They went on to again defeat Quebec in the semis before taking on the Ontario side in the finals. In fact, Ontario was the lone side to win a set against the B.C. duo.
"You travel all that way and you're waiting for that one game," Caverly said. "We kind of coasted throughout the tournament until then. That was the game we wanted to play and we went there to win gold. As soon as it was done, it was pretty relieving."
Caverly's latest win goes alongside a lengthy list of both personal and team accomplishments in his eight-year career.
On the team side of the ledger, he's racked up a gold at the under 18 national beach volleyball championships, a second-place showing at the Centre of Gravity tourney, and a seventh-place finish at the highlycompetitive Vancouver Open.
His personal accolades include Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association first team all star placement and a slew of British Columbia Colleges' Athletic Association hardware: first team all-star award, provincial tournament MVP and rookie of the year.
That he's only been playing beach volleyball for less than a handful of years only underscore his versatility in the sport, regardless of the playing surface he's competing on.
"It's the probably the most renowned championship I've won," he said. "As I was playing indoor, I found that I was pretty good at everything but I wasn't really good at one position. When I went out to the beach to play in high school, I did really well and had a lot of success early."
Now his focus again returns to the collegiate loop, where Caverly will be playing in his fifth year on the left side.
The goal, as it is every year, is to hoist both a B.C. and Canadian banner.
"It's always competitive in B.C., but we're definitely up there with the other top teams," Caverly said. "We definitely want to do well at nationals."
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