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Coach’s Corner: Volleyball

Jessica Wind previews the bronze-winning women’s volleyball and the rehauled men’s volleyball teams.

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By Jessica Wind (Contributor) – Email

Print Edition: September 12, 2012

Women’s Volleyball

After coming third in Canada last season, the Cascades women’s volleyball team has only improvement on the brain. I caught up with head coach, Dennis Bokenfohr and asked him about training and the upcoming season.

How has your training been going over the summer? Any special stories?

Training has been going good, we’ve been at it since July. Just been getting the new players used to the new system. As for stories, it’s not really special, but we’re starting the season without any injuries, so that’s something!

Can you tell us anything about the team’s training regimen?

It’s been a bit of a fun first week, we call it “hell week”. We work on getting the girls back in game mode, with a little bit of everything. There’s swimming in the morning, today they did Zumba, and there are long hikes, plus training in the evening.

Have you made any new acquisitions over the summer? How will they affect the composition of the team?

Yeah, well we lost our starting centre from last season, and replaced her with a very capable rookie, so looking forward to that. As well as we gained a 5th year transfer from Capilano; she’s going to close out her career here.

What are your expectations for this season?

Well we finished third in Canada last year, and are now ranked number two going into this season, so we are really looking to improve on that ranking and have our shot at nationals. Very high expectations for this season.

How does the team deal with pre-game superstitions?

You’re probably talking to the least superstitious person here. We go through a lot of mental prep to avoid that kind of thing. That being said we are a very routine based group when it comes to warm-up.

Men’s Volleyball

Considering their training only started last week, the Cascades men’s volleyball team spared no time getting back into game mode for their upcoming season. I caught up with assistant coach Carl Nienhuis while he and some of the players observed the women’s practice.

How has your training been going over the summer? 

Great, we’re in the first week. Just finished tryouts. It’s a good sign going into the season not knowing who the starting six are.

Can you tell us anything about the team’s training regimen? 

We train every day, Monday to Friday for two hours. Then the team does strength and conditioning together and two or three fitness sessions on their own. We train seven days a week.

Have you made any new acquisitions over the summer? How will they affect the composition of the team? 

There are tons of new bodies this year, with seven returnees, that’s about 50 per cent. Change is always a good thing, we’re a bit bigger and deeper. We have also gained some new coaching help that bring in a new perspective on training and other elements.

What are your expectations for this season?

As a sports psychologist, that’s not a fair question. I’m sure they expect to bust their butts, and earn starting roles, but that’s more of a demand (laughs). They all want to earn play time.

How does the team deal with pre-game superstitions?

I would say routine is a better word. And I think a lot of the men have them, or are just trying to figure them out. One thing we stick to is sleeveless Thursdays; one of our freshest rookies came in this past Thursday with sleeves, so we ripped them off (laughs). There’s an entertaining story for you!

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