There’s a new kid in town, and his name is Oosterveen.
Tom Oosterveen is a 23-year-old business administration student who has been out of volleyball for a few years. But, now that he’s back in the game, he has taken the MCAC by storm.
“We knew it was just a matter of time before the training paid off and he made a huge impact in our league,” said Red River head coach Dan Gilbert. “He has taken his game to a whole new level.”
Gilbert speaks of his Rebels’ two match wins at Canadian Mennonite University in late January that improved their conference record to 10-0.
In their Friday night straight sets win (25-20, 25-16, 25-18), the Regina-born Oosterveen led Red River with 14 kills, and committed only three attack errors on 30 attempts for a 37% efficiency rating.
“These are great numbers,” said Gilbert of his 6’6” freshman out of St. Paul’s High School. “What is more surprising is that Saturday he stepped up his game even further and led the team with 23 kills in 5 sets, and only made 5 attack errors on 44 attempts for a 41% efficiency rating.”
The Blazers clearly came out with a chip on their shoulder in match number two, forcing the Rebels to five sets. It was the first time Red River had lost a set in league play since mid-November, when they dropped a single frame at home to the same Blazer squad.
The Rebels squeaked out a win in the Saturday matinée 3-2 (25-21, 24-26, 25-22, 23-25, 15-8).
Gilbert and the Rebels will be going for a third-consecutive MCAC title when they host the 2011 Final 4 Volleyball Championships at Red River College’s Notre Dame Campus on March 4 and 5.
By Darrin Bauming