Brent Forster - RDC
The Red Deer College Kings Volleyball team were without Hamish Hazelden for most of the first half due to injury, but the Kinesiology & Sport Studies student made an impact in Olds Friday night. The Kings didn't have the start they wanted but they increased their energy and swept the Broncos 25-16, 25-13 and 25-9.
Hazelden, a second-year student-athlete from Espearance, Australia, led the Kings with 9 kills and he added 4 digs. Adam Turlejski picked up 4 kills and 2 stuff blocks. Ben Holmes contributed 6 kills, 1 dig and 1 stuff block. Setter Jacob Rapin, a first-year student-athlete from Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, totaled 19 assists and 1 stuff block for RDC.
Tyson Deschene led the Broncos with 8 kills.
Kings Head Coach Aaron Schulha liked the increased energy and execution as the match progressed. "Despite a fairly slow start, we finished the match in convincing fashion. Our left-side attack looked more efficient than it has in a while," said Schulha. "Our service pressure and our serve-receive were pretty solid throughout the evening. Our substitutes came in and they did an outstanding job in the second set resulting in a 16-2 run to finish it off."
Schulha would like to see a better start in the rematch. "The biggest area for improvement on Saturday is to come out with more energy and focus from the warm-up, and follow the game plan throughout the match," said Schulha.
The RDC Kings (8-5) will look for a strong second half similar to last season as they elevated their play en route to another Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) gold medal and Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Men's Volleyball National Championship. The Kings sit in a tie for fourth spot in the ACAC Men's Volleyball South Division and they will face the Broncos (0-15) in a weekend road rematch Saturday, January 6 at 8:00 p.m.