Huskies make five additions for 2013-14 campaign


Betker, Nicole

May 27, 2013, Saskatoon, SK (ISN) – The University of Saskatchewan Huskie men’s volleyball squad is proud to announce five recruits as the newest additions to the program.

Setters Zak Rempel and Emory Wells, outsider hitters Mikal Pokraka and Alex Bader, as well as middle Rob Mason have all made their commitment to play with the Huskies in the 2013-14 season. The Huskies will look to continue the turn around as one of the top teams in the Canada West. In 2012-13 Saskatchewan finished third in the standings with a 15-7 record, appearing in the playoffs for the first time in five seasons.

Zak Rempel, 6-5, Setter, Holy Cross High School/Medicine Hat College, Saskatoon

Playing the last two seasons for the Medicine Hat College Rattlers in the Alberta Colleges Athletic Association, Rempel knows what it takes to compete at an elite level. Named a Second Team ACAC All-Star last season, Rempel will also represent Saskatchewan at the Canada Summer Games in Sherbrooke in 2013.

“Zak combines size and athleticism which will help him become a great setter at the CIS level,” said Huskie head coach Brian Gavlas. “With the college experience and this summer’s Canada Games we expect him to help our program continue the success from the past couple of years.”

Mikal Pokraka, 6-7, Outside Hitter, St. Joseph High School, Saskatoon

Pokraka will also enter the Canada West with experience gained from Team Saskatchewan at the Canada Summer Games.

“Mikal was the top high school volleyball player athletically and academically this season,” said Gavlas. “He will be a big part of our present and future. He is very versatile and can play all three attacking positions. He will make a big impact on our program.”

Alex Bader, 6-4, Left Side, Sir Winston Churchill High School, Calgary

Bader understands what it takes to win after playing for the successful Elite West Club in Calgary. Last season, the team won the U17 Gold at the USA Junior Nationals. At the tournament, Bader was named one of the Tournament MVPs.

“Alex is another outstanding student-athlete that will have a major impact on our program,” said Gavlas. “He combines good jumping ability and a great arm swing with a variety of shots. He has a great competitive spirit and we look forward to great things from Alex on the court and in the classroom.”

Emory Wells, 6-2, Setter, Winnipeg Wesmen, Winnipeg

Returning to the CIS after a three-year hiatus, Wells played with the Winnipeg Wesmen in 2007-08, 2008-09 and 2009-10.

“With 63 Canada West matches under his belt, Emory will be a veteran, stabilizing influence on our team,” said Gavlas. “Zak and Emory will give us a great combination in the setting department to replace fifth-year Chris Gilbert. We should have a seamless transition with the two setters.”

Robert Mason, 6-5, middle, Medicine Hat College, Kelvington

Transferring from the Medicine Hat College Rattlers, Mason was an ACAC First Team All-Star last season.

“Robert will provide competitive depth next year as a redshirt with the goal of becoming a major contributor for the future,” said Gavlas.

Galvas and the Huskies will continue to prepare for the Canada West regular season. The schedule will be released next week.

Match Notes: Five current Huskie men’s volleyball players will don the roster for the Canada Summer Games including left side Jordan Nowakowski, middle Tyler Epp, libero Matt Erickson, left side Joey Peters and middle Ian Farrer. Huskie men’s volleyball assistant coaches Mark Dodds and Blaine Donauer will be the coaches for the Saskatchewan entry.