Volleyball Kings sweep Clippers in Turlejski's return

Michael Sumner (1) finished with 2 assists and 10 digs Friday against the Clippers.  Photo - Tony Hansen
Michael Sumner (1) finished with 2 assists and 10 digs Friday against the Clippers. Photo - Tony Hansen

In their final weekend series of the regular season, the Red Deer College Kings Volleyball team competed against the Briercrest College Clippers at RDC. Adam Turlejski was back into the Kings' lineup after dealing with a lengthy injury. Unfortunately, Tristan Dexter was sidelined with a slight concussion but he hopes to return for the ACAC Championship next weekend. 

The Kings were energized and took the opening set 25-13. Ryan Beatson and Luke Brisbane had 4 assists each for RDC. Ludvig Larsen contributed 7 assists for Briercrest College.

The 2nd set was back-and-forth. The Clippers tried to climb back into the match but the RDC Kings picked up a 25-21 victory. Regan Fathers led the Kings with a total of 5 kills. For the Clippers, Javier Alvarez and Harry Rosewarn contributed 4 kills each.

RDC jumped out to a 10-5 lead in the 3rd set. The Clippers' attack had a difficult time hitting past the Kings' block. The RDC Kings went on a 15-8 run to win 25-13 and pick up the sweep. Brian Grenier led the Kings with 8 kills. Luke Brisbane picked up 22 assists and 3 service aces for RDC.

Grenier was chosen as the Kings player-of-the-game. The Kinesiology and Sport Studies student accumulated 8 kills and 5 service aces.

Kings Volleyball Head Coach Aaron Schulha thought Grenier had a strong match.

"Brian did a pretty solid job for us. He was fully engaged and as vocal as I've seen him," said Schulha. "When he comes out of his shell he is the most effective."

While Briercrest College were without some student-athletes, the Kings wanted to focus on their play. 

"Briercrest were without some of their horses tonight. They've been banged up, similar to us. We were concerned about things on our side," said Schulha. "It was nice having Adam back in a game and start. We will probably start Daimyn (Biletsky) tomorrow to keep everyone fresh." 

It's a boost getting Turlejski into game action before the playoffs.

"Adam did a good job tonight. He is a solid blocker and got a big block for us at the end," said Schulha. "He is an energy guy, talking and saying the right things. Luke (Brisbane) and Adam have a strong connection. He wasn't quite as explosive tonight but it's coming. There were some good things for sure." 

Turlejski totalled 7 kills, 1 service ace, 1 dig and 1 stuff block in his return. 

With the victory, Kings Volleyball Head Coach Aaron Schulha picked up his 200th win in the ACAC which is a remarkable milestone. The Kings (18-5) improve to 36 points in the division and trail the Rattlers by 2 points as Medicine Hat College also won on Friday. 

Saturday at 3:00 p.m, the same teams hit the court in a rematch.

Scholarships and community involvement

Prior to the opening serve, Yvonne Walsh presented the Jon Walsh Memorial Volleyball Scholarship to this year's male recipient, Luke Brisbane. The Bachelor of Commerce student works hard on and off the court, takes a full course load and maintains a high GPA. Brisbane is a member of the Captain's Council, coaches with the Kings Volleyball Club program and is one of the top setters in Canada.

The Henry's Eavestroughing Kings Volleyball Scholarship is presented annually to a student-athlete who exemplifies a commitment to athletic development, sportsmanship, leadership and work ethic. Former Kings Volleyball player, Aaron Yasinski, presented Parker Biletsky with this year's scholarship. Biletsky shows a consistent work ethic, is well respected and is willing to accept any role to help the Kings achieve success.

The impact of RDC's student-athletes continue to extend beyond their athletic achievements. Kings Volleyball is supporting the Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre (CASASC) to bring awareness to their #irespect campaign. The RDC Kings invite fans to show their support at the volleyball and basketball games this weekend and let them know what you respect.

At the games there will be the opportunity to sign a large #irespect poster, donate to CASASC and use a Snapchat geofilter to increase awareness. The Kings encourage you to post on social media using the hashtag #irespect.

Bachelor of Commerce student, Adam Turlejski, spearheaded this campaign and is motivated to raise awareness for the CASASC and their #irespect campaign.

"I think it's a great opportunity to create a relationship with a local and growing support centre. The cause really speaks for itself," said Turlejski. "The need for respect cannot be undermined and it allows everyone to bring something to the table. I like the cause due to the fact that it is aimed at prevention and attempts to stop problems at their root."

Turlejski and his Kings' teammates see the value in supporting the community and setting an example for the youth.

"I think it is absolutely crucial that Kings Volleyball gets involved in the community. It sets a quality example, especially for the youth, to stand up for what is right," said Turlejski. "I saw this as an opportunity to give back to a community that has done so much for me."