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New coach serves up a new season of men’s volleyball

This year the Cascades men’s volleyball team begins a new chapter in their history with brand new head coach Kyle Donen. He is looking to improve on the woes of the team’s recent history after the dismissal of previous coach Greg Russell.

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By Nathan Hutton (The Cascade) – Email

Print Edition: September 10, 2014

The men will kick off the new season with their first game against the CBC Bearcats on October 17. (Image: Giandomenico Ricci/flickr)

The men will kick off the new season with their first game against the CBC Bearcats on October 17. (Image: Giandomenico Ricci/flickr)

This year the Cascades men’s volleyball team begins a new chapter in their history with brand new head coach Kyle Donen. He is looking to improve on the woes of the team’s recent history after the dismissal of previous coach Greg Russell.

“I hope to build on the legacy that Greg started here at UFV and find ways to grow and expand the program for the future,” says coach Donen when asked how he plans to distinguish himself from Russell.

The Cascades finished the season last year at eight wins and 16 losses. The team exhibited moments where they proved their talent against top rivals. One instance in particular being when they defeated the Columbia Bible College Bearcats (16-8) in two of the four games they played against each other.

The volleyball team held their tryouts on Wednesday night. The roster has yet to be announced, but coach Donen he claimed that one of the most valuable assets to the team this year will be the continuity from last year’s squad.

“I think the team had a lot of depth last year, and a number of the players are returning this season. The continuity of the group should definitely help, but it will be important to see how the new faces gel with the team and contribute. We are going to focus on being a better ball-control team and creating a winning mentality on and off the court. I really believe in this group and I want them to believe in themselves.”

Donen also went on to explain how he feels his youth will allow him to coach a certain way.

“I find I relate well to my players at this level because just a few years ago I was playing university volleyball just like they are now. I have always been able to draw from my own experiences to relate to my players in a positive way.”

The men will have just over a month to prepare for their opening weekend festivities against local crosstown rivals, the Columbia Bible College Bearcats, where the Cascades will be tested immediately by one of the top teams in the PACWEST.

This season will consist of 24 games, where the men will be presented with the opportunity to get back into the playoffs after missing the postseason last year. Recent playoff woes have come from the team’s inability to exit the first round, and from dropping their games against UBC-O, Douglas, and Camosun in consecutive years.

However, this year is a fresh start with a new coach, and we can look forward to an exciting new season coming our way.

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