It’s a recruiting class that head coach Shawn Reaume believes can have a big early impact for the St. Clair Saints men’s volleyball program.
The Saints announced Friday that Essex high school product Josh Derksen, Vista Academy high school product Eric Glos, Riverside high school product Kale Wilkinson, Chatham Ursuline, Zach Myers, and Sarnia Saint-Francois-Xavier High School product Jacob Arsenault-Dufour. join the program in the fall.
“Bringing these five athletes in is a huge step for the program, especially after a rough and uneven season,” said Reaume, whose team missed the OCAA playoffs in a COVID-19-shortened season by one game.
“They will take on various roles, from immediately taking the on-court spots of our graduating players, to competing in practice to break up the starting lineup.
“They also helped create one of the few problems that is a good thing to have; too many strong options. I can’t wait for the competition to start in the fall.”
A 6-foot, 193-pound libero, 17-year-old Derksen was named 9th grade rookie of the year while helping Essex win the WECSSAA and SWOSSAA titles.
“I love volleyball and wanted to play nearby, and St. Clair was the perfect fit for me,” said Derksen, who will be majoring in health sciences.
A 6-foot, 190-pound left-sided hitter, Glos served as captain of the Vista Academy team.
“St. Clair volleyball is a great fit for me because the players and coaches are pretty advanced and I think I can be a great asset to the team,” said Glos, 18, who is heading into the extinction program. “I’m excited to experience the part of being on a great team that works well together and has good team chemistry.”
Derksen, Gloms and Wilkinson are all familiar with each other having spent time playing club volleyball locally with Sky Volley. The trio recently won gold with the 18 and under team at the Bugarski Cup.
Wilkinson, a 6-foot-5, 200-pound outside hitter, said trust in his teammates and coaches, being close to home and the safety, security and investigation program all played a part in getting him to St. Clair.
“The experience I hope to get out of St. Clair would be to be as good as I can be at volleyball, so that in the future I can teach kids the same way I did,” Wilkinson, 18, said.
A 6-foot-3, 180-pound outside hitter, Myers was a two-time MVP and helped Ursuline to a SWOSSAA AAA title in 2019 while also playing club volleyball with the Chatham Ballhawks, where he won four Association gold medals. Ontario Volleyball.
“I knew I wanted to take the St. Clair power line program (technical program) anyway, and luckily I can play volleyball too,” Myers, 19, said. “With a combination of both, the decision was easy.”
Arsenault-Dufour, a 6-foot-8, 167-pound middle hitter, was named his school’s team MVP in 2018-19 and also played club volleyball with the Ballhawks and Twin Bridges Thunder. He credits Reaume with being as concerned with his education as volleyball with getting him to St. Clair.
“Shawn has always been in touch with me and none of the other colleges seemed to have a genuine interest in helping guide me toward what I want academically and on the court,” said Arsenault-Dufour, 19, who is heading to the program. carpentry technician. “It meant a lot, during the decision process, to have immediate help with any questions I had.”