The St. Thomas men’s volleyball team started off their season where they left off: dominating the ACAA. In a tip-off tournament hosted by Holland College on Oct. 18-19, the Tommies won 10 of 11 sets.
“We established a lot of places that need a lot of work,” said Tommies head coach Francis Duguay. “We have a lot of time to work.”
With the addition of three rookies, the men’s volleyball team’s starting lineup hasn’t changed much from last year.
“The core is still intact,” said Duguay. “By the end of the season we are going to be looking pretty much the same (as last year).”
Duguay said that the team doesn’t have as deep of a bench this year. They’re focusing more on conditioning so the team can increase their endurance and stamina.
Last year, team captain Jason Cannon was named St. Thomas male athlete of the year for leading the Tommies to an ACAA championship. This year, Cannon hopes the team improves on how they did at CCAA nationals, where they were beat out of the second round in the fifth set against Mohawk College.
“We went pretty far and it’s the same team coming back, so we’re just looking to do better,” said Cannon. “We lost experience on the team… I also think we are a little bit stronger. The guys from last year have improved a lot.”
Assistant captain William Rochelow said nationals is definitely their goal, though he doesn’t think the team should focus on it too early.
CCAA nationals will be hosted by Holland Collage this year. This means the top two teams from the ACAA will progress to the national finals.
“This season is going to be a big one for us and hopefully we’ll get some crowds out to support us,” said Rochelow.
Their first home game is on Nov. 16 against the USA Dragons.
“The goal in the season is to win nationals,” said Duguay. “We are very excited this year. We have extremely high flyers… The players we have are very exciting.”
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