It’s off the beaten path and limited opportunities exist for youth in the area because of its geographic location.
It’s not a place where people would expect to find an elite athlete who has shown they can hold her own against some of the best in Eastern Canada.
Abby Osmond has changed all that.
The 15-year-old Level II student at Hampden Academy is one of few female volleyball players from the west coast to earn a spot on the Newfoundland and Labrador 15U female volleyball squad representing the province at the 2017 Eastern Elite Volleyball Championships July 23-30 in New Brunswick.
It’s a tournament that features some of the top volleyball talent in the Atlantic provinces.
“Being from a small town you never thought you’d get this far,” Osmond said.
She embraced sports at an early age and loves to wear her school colours in volleyball, soccer and basketball.
However, it’s clear her passion for volleyball is what gets her heart pumping.
Being afforded an opportunity to represent her province in volleyball means the world to her because she views it as a privilege.
It’s her second year in a row with such an honour, last summer suiting up for the provincial 14U team that played in the same tournament.
It was a successful tournament for Osmond as the five-foot-10 daughter of Billy Brett and Kelly Osmond was named to the tournament all-star team.
She didn’t rest on her laurels it would appear. She went into this year’s training camp focused on showing she belonged with the best in the province and she got the result she wanted.
She made the cut at the first training camp held in Corner Brook so that meant a trip to St. John’s to fight for one of 12 spots on the team. Osmond got good news only a few weeks later when she learned she was going to New Brunswick.
“I wanted to show that just because I made it one year it wasn’t just a fluke that I got chosen,” she said. “I just wanted to show my actual skills and show people that you don’t necessarily have to think you’re so good at it, but you surprise yourself really when you get in there and see your skill level.”
She’s thankful for her older sibling Jada who shared the same passion for volleyball and a handful of other sports and motivated her to push herself to see how much she has in the tank for the game at a higher level.
She also appreciates the helping hand and guidance she got from her coach Derrick Cave who spent countless hours at Hampden Academy showing her how to find her way on the volleyball court.
“This is a milestone. Just to come this far was amazing. I haven’t really accomplished anything much more than this,” she said.
Below is a list of players headed to the camp:
Provincial Training Excellence
Abby Warren (Irishtown-Summerside)
Abigail Hynes (Benoit’s Cove)
Ayana Wiseman (Pasadena)
Haley Greene (Corner Brook)
Hannah Bond (Corner Brook)
Kaitlyn Watkins (Corner Brook)
Kaitlyn Pennell (Benoit’s Cove)
Mackenzie Chant (Port aux Basques)
Shelby Gallant (John’s Beach)
Eastern Elite Championship
Abby Osmond (Hampden)
Anna Barrett (Corner Brook)
Emily Butt (Mount Moriah)
Harriet Howe (Pasadena)
Miranda Luff (Corner Brook)
Paige Hickey (Corner Brook)
Sara Dunne (Corner Brook)
Brianna Kennedy (Pasadena)
Katie Hickey (Benoit’s Cove)
*** Edited May 19 to correct information provided to The Star about number of players on west coast ***