PCSS grad Gord Perrin and the Canadian men’s volleyball team got off to a rousing start at the 2016 Olympic Games on Sunday.
Team Canada, seeded 12th in the tournament, took advantage of opponents’ mistakes to sweep their first match, winning three straight sets over fifth-seeded USA.
If Canada doesn’t win another match in Rio de Janeiro, the team will return home with a symbolic gold medal, having defeated the Americans on the world stage.
Described by television commentators as Canada’s best all-round player, Perrin, wearing Number 2, was at his familiar position on the the front line when Canada pulled off the upset.
Canada jumped out to a quick 11-9 first set lead, then Saskatoon’s Gavin Schmitt’s serve lead to set point to give his team a 25-23 win. Canada cruised to a 25-17 victory in the second set, then sealed the match with another 25-23 nail biter.
Perrin’s performance was a sweet one for at least three fans in the crowed. His father, Dave, mother, Ruth Boehmer, and sister, Alicia, cheered wildly throughout.
“What a fantastic game to see,” Dave Perrin told the Advance in a text message immediately afterward. “Before the match we were talking about a happiness quota. I said if they win it would be at least 9.4. Now I’d rank it at 9.8!”
Dave said earlier visit to Brazil got off to a shaky start when his luggage didn’t arrive with him, apparently having been routed to Lima, Peru. But Alicia ordered him not to tell Gord anything but positive news so that he could remain focused on the job at hand.
“Part of the instructions from the boss,” he said. “Alicia insists that we keep telling him all is great. She says if I get shot they will put me on ice in the bathtub till the Games are over! And tell Gord that dad is just out to the can if they see him!”
Canada was scheduled to take on Brazil in another A Pool match on Tuesday, after the Advance’s production deadline.