Men’s volleyball pre-season

by | Oct 7, 2022 | Sports

After a successful 2021-22 season, NAIT’s men’s volleyball team is ready to take on another season with a full returning roster. As Head Coach Jordan Taylor says, the team has a great chance to compete for the championship again this year.

“Other teams in our league also improved, so the ACAC is looking very strong this year as a whole, so it won’t be easy. But our scars from losing the Alberta Collegiate Athletic Conference (ACAC) final at home last year are still there as a daily reminder, and our group feels that we have unfinished business and are more determined than ever to win a National Championship,” said Taylor.

“The additions of some new players like Jarod Robert, a member of the New Zealand National Team, and Noah Steppan, a 2022 17U National Champion with Northern Alberta Volleyball Club (NAVC), have also helped elevate our training environment and will be important pieces in our journey this season.”

The men’s team had their first taste of preseason games after the FOG Classic tournament. 

“We had a great first weekend of preseason. Some of our seniors were able to get the rust off, while our rookies were able to get their first taste of college-level volleyball. Our main off-season/summer focus was our serve velocity. We hope to be a more aggressive serving team this year, as we have some athletes who can score direct points/aces from the service line. With that comes tons of risks, like missing lots of serves, but the rewards are also vast, and that was evident by our 3-0 win vs. the top U-Sport program University of Alberta Golden Bears, on Saturday, where we racked up over 10 service aces in the win,” said Taylor. 

With a roster of 19 players, there’s a lot of diversity on the team to work with. 

“Our coaching staff has gotten creative on our practice structure. We do lots of split squad practices and are playing lots of preseason matches to get our young player’s experience. We also have lots of position-based practices and find extra time for guys to get individual reps specific to them so no one feels excluded or neglected. Overall, we have a good roster balance, and everyone’s role is clearly defined, so the roster size hasn’t been that big of an issue to date,” said Taylor. 

The team is working towards their first regular season game, which will take place on October 14 at NAIT vs. Kings University.

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