Volleyball Canada has announced a new indoor ball partnership with Mikasa beginning immediately through to 2024. The Mikasa MVA200 will be the official competition all for all National Championships and Canada Cups along with being used at REP (Regional Excellence Program) across the country to help reflect what is being used at the International level.
Yes, you already know what that means… NO MORE TACHIKARA!
While some of you old-timers might have nostalgic memories of playing with the Tachikara - there’s little doubt it’s one of the worst balls in rotation at the moment. An inconsistent bladder that doesn’t evenly and a flaky exterior that would peel apart easily. If their was one thing everyone hated about Nationals - it was about having to use those damn Tachikara’s. The only thing we’ll be losing was the red, white and black colour pattern. The branding of that ball was the only good thing about it.
(Maybe we can petition Mikasa to make some red & white balls? Am I the only one thinking that would be awesome?)
While Mikasa has recently announced a new indoor ball, the V200W - the MVA200 is currently in used by all but one if the Provincial associations and allows teams and clubs to transition to the new ball seamlessly and without extra cost. I repeat - YOU DO NOT HAVE TO GO OUT AND GET THE NEW BALL! (Unless you live in British Columbia where they used the Baden 🤷🏼♂️).
On that note -it’s honestly a little disheartening not to mention ridiculous how quickly people started jumping on Volleyball Canada saying VC is trying to gouge them by the announcement of this new ball.
It’s actually a cost saving measure for the majority of clubs in the country as they will no longer have to purchase two different balls
In what world do we think Volleyball Canada is benefitting this at all financially? Do you think they get a cut from sales of Mikasa balls now? Don’t be ridiculous. Change needs to happen once and a while - or would you rather go back to rally scoring and no libero?
This is the best case scenario for basically everyone (again, we’re sorry BC). Not only does it step in line with what the provinces and clubs are using - but also to the Official FIVB indoor ball. Which is pretty huge for anyone who has used these two balls and know the difference between the two.
It will be interesting the see the difference of play at Nationals where it’s common to hear “We couldn’t figure out how to serve and control the Tachikara” from coaches who’s teams are under performing on Day 1. Now there’s no more blaming the ball!
Alina Dormann entered the 2017-18 uSports season in fine form, having spent the summer of 2017 with the Canadian senior women’s national team. Dormann represented Canada at the 2017 FISU Summer Universiade in Taipei and went onto have another dominant season for the Blues on the court.
The Ottawa native led the OUA with 3.66 kills per set - good for seventh in the nation - and ranked second in the province and fourth nationally with 4.6 points per set through 18 matches in 2017-18. She also topped Toronto in total attacks (617) and serving aces (32), while ranking second in digs per set (2.49) and third in blocks per set (0.55). Dormann was named the OUA East player of the year for the third consecutive season, while also earning her third career U SPORTS all-Canadian nod. She led Toronto to a 15-4 regular season record and notched a season-high 27.5 points as Toronto topped the Guelph Gryphons, 3-2, to advance to their seventh straight OUA Final Four.
What’s more impressive is that she achieved all of this while pursuing a double major in biology and health & disease at the University of Toronto. The three-time U SPORTS Academic All-Canadian is a highly decorated student of U of T’s Victoria College, having won three of their major academic awards: the Regents Performance Award, given to a student who has excelled academically and who has distinguished themselves through their achievements in the creative or performing arts or athletics; the Helen Mae Woodliffe Scholarship, given to students with outstanding overall A standing; and the John David Steward Scholarship, given to students achieving excellence in the course of their studies.
In addition to her excellence on the court and in the classroom, Dormann makes time to give back to the volleyball community. She volunteered as an assistant coach with the Ontario Volleyball Association (OVA) for the 2018 Ontario Summer Games and served as an assistant coach with Volleyball Position Camp (VPC). Dormann also coaches recreational house league, competitive beach and skills clinics within the Leaside Volleyball Club in Toronto.
“Alina embodies excellence both on and off the court,” said Kristine Drakich, who is in her 30th season as Varsity Blues head coach in 2018-19. “She is an amazing student and athlete. Not only has she been an outstanding player, including representing Canada at the FISU Games in 2017 and being named an All-Canadian, but she has also maintained one of the highest grade point averages in the history of our program.”
The uSports season is back in full swing this weekend, there’s a full schedule across the country! Here’s what you should watch.
The #3 Dalhousie Tigers have been sweeping their way through the AUS this season. dropping only two sets in 9 matches so far this season. One of those sets was to Acadia at the beginning of the season - while the Axewomen’s only two losses have come at the hands of the Tigers. Acadia is led by duo Lucy Glen Carter and Lauren Renzella. The pair sit at #2 & #3 in kills in the AUS with 100 and 90 respectively - trailing only the Tigers’ Julie Moore with 101. Can Acadia make a move on the perennial powers?
W | UBC (8-6) @ MacEwan (7-5) | Friday: 6:00 p.m. PT/9:00 p.m. ET - Saturday 5:00 p.m. PT/8:00 p.m. ET (Pass Required)
With 7 teams within 4 points of each other in the middle of the CanadaWest standings -this weekend’s matchup could give a serious leg up over a crowded groups towards a top 4 spot. MacEwan will be looking to prove they’re the real deal this weekend when they visit the Thunderbirds and the best player in the country. Kiera Van Ryk, fresh off an appearance at the World Championships with the National team, the Surrey B.C. hasn’t missed a beat - tearing her way through her 2nd year in uSports. With an astonishing 305 points in 14 matches, she’s averaging 5.8 points per set and averaging 4.68 kills per set. The Griffins have taken the scoring by committee approach - with 5 five players having scored at least 105 points, a win in Vancouver would be a big statement.
For a team who hasn’t had a winning record in almost a decade - the Waterloo have been the biggest surprise of the uSports season. Putting themselves at the top with statement wins over Western and McMaster -they have a perfect record sit sit at the top of the Division. They’re biggest match-up of the year so far will be in Toronto on Sunday. While the Varsity Blues may have a pair of losses to Western and Queens - they still have the best player in the conference Alina Dormann, who sits 4th in OUA scoring with 129.5 points while averaging 3.67 kills/set, and Brianna Patrick who sits in 5th with 118 points. This will be the Warriors first test against a Nationally ranked opponent - can they prove they’re the real deal?
A classic match-up no matter what - this one will be especially import as it determines who gets to sit in sole possession of 2nd in the OUA West. Kelsey Veltman leads the OUA in scoring with 146.5 points and a .286 efficiency - and is the engine who runs the Mustangs. For the Marauders, Jessie Nairn has been having a breakout season. Leading McMaster with 115 points and averaging 2.97 kills/set - she also sits 2nd in digs with 47.
M | #1 Brandon (12-2) @ #4 Alberta (11-1) | Friday 6:00 p.m. MT/8:00 p.m. ET - Saturday 6:30 p.m. MT/8:30 p.m. ET (Game of the Week Free Match in Friday)
The Bobcats stand atop of the uSports men’s volleyball rankings for the first time in program history - but they won’t have time to take a a breath at top as they travel to Edmonton this weekend to take on the Golden Bears. A pair of 3-0 wins over the previously #1 Trinity Western Spartans last weekend was a statement heard across Canada - they’re going to have to play just as well, in a match up that should essentially determine the favourite heading into the playoffs. The Golden Bears’ sole loss came at the hands of the Spartans, and they have a veteran team that has a great case to be the best team in the country. Taryq Sani’s move to the outside has produced some explosive results as he sits 5th in the conference in kills with 164 and has a team high 191 points. If someone grabs a pair of W’s - they undoubtably have a strangle hold on the top stop in the Canada West.
M | #5 Mount Royal (9-3) @ #9 Thompson Rivers (7-3) | Friday 6:45 p.m. PT/9:45 p.m. ET (Pass Required)
This match-up between the biggest biggest sluggers in the league has huge implications both in standings and National Ranking. MRU’s Tyler Schimdt and TRU’s Tim Dobbert sit 1-2 in kills and points per set. While Schimdt, averaging 5.7 points/set has played two more matches than Dobbert, his 220 kills lead the league while Dobbert, averaging 5.0 points/set, has 181 tallies for second. Both teams sit with 3 losses and are fighting for fourth place - so a pair of wins here could mean homecourt advantage come the playoffs - not to mention a boost in the National Rankings.
This first matchup of the year will likely determine top spot in the OUA West. Windsor picked up right where they left off last season with a Bronze at Provincials and their first appearance at Nationals and are making a serious case to being the top team in the OUA. Despite McMaster looking a little human this year with a pair of losses - they’re still the top dog until someone takes the Forsyth Cup away from them. Andrew Richards is still world-class - sitting 4th in points with 128.5 points, while he and Nathan Delguidice sit 4-5 averaging 4.7 and 4.6 points/set respectively. On Windsor’s side of things - Pierce Johnson has been a machine - averaging 4.09 kills/set at a .356 efficiency and sits in 3rd with 154.5 points. No matter what happens Saturday - this will quite possibly be a preview of the OUA Final.
Guest Post by Michael Amoroso from Momentum Pro Sports
It was a few days after New Years in 2015, at the start of practice in Athens, with Panathinaikos Volleyball Club. Sport in Greece involves a ton of passion and usually an incredibly wild fan base. Panathinaikos had several elite sports and is still one of the largest sport clubs in Greece with over 1 million supporters. I had just returned from a fantastic trip north to Bulgaria, to visit the Queen’s University Men’s Volleyball Team - they were there training before a Bulgarian tournament. I returned ‘home’ to Athens on January 2nd to rejoin my club for practice the next day.
We were rested and ready to fight through the second half of the season. We had an exciting grudge match coming up on home court, against rival club Panachaiki. At the time, Panachaiki was the home of Canadians Steve Gotch and Steve Brinkman, and matches with them were always exciting (for a variety of reasons – the last match broke out into a fistfight between our supporters and theirs, a common practice in the Greek Volley League). Our new coach, Coach K, was just about to start his pre-practice meeting in Greek, which would be translated by a teammate for myself, Jared Moore (American roommate, fellow Middle Blocker), and Danijel Galic (Croatian international Outside Hitter). Just as coach was about to begin, members of our fan club arrived for an unannounced visit.
They came about 40 strong, many holding their motorcycle helmets, and walked right across our court to join our pre-practice meeting. Their ‘leader’ spoke to us as a group for about 3 minutes in Greek, and to this day I have not gotten a full translation of what he said. However, it was very serious, and all the Greek players and staff listened intently. When he was finished, the fan club departed, Coach K finished his meeting and we began practice. I asked our team captain “What was that all about?”, to which he said their message was simple: “We’ll be at this next game – Win… Or else.”
Read the rest of the article at the link below!
Join Everett and Dan from FiveOne VB to watch the Gold Medal match of the 2018 Men’s Volleyball World Championships between 🇧🇷 Brazil and 🇵🇱 Poland LIVE from Torino, Italy!
WE WILL POST LIVE STREAMS HERE CLOSER TO GAME TIME
🇨🇦Canada vs. 🇮🇷Iran - 10:00 a.m. ET / 7:00 a.m. PT
🇨🇦Canada vs. 🇺🇸USA - 10:00 a.m. ET / 7:00 a.m. PT
2018 FIVB World Chmapionships | Pool G | Round 2