OLDS — Ryan Marsden, head coach of the Olds College Broncos men's volleyball team, has recruited several new players after losing a few to graduation this past season.
Among those recruits are Askiy Walkingbear of the Thunderchild First Nation in Saskatchewan; Ben Gammel of West Kelowna, B.C.; and Seth Muller of Cranford, in southern Alberta.
All have close family connections to the college.
Walkingbear, an outside hitter, stands 6' 2" tall. He plans to study animal sciences and sports management.
His two brothers, Thundersky Walkingbear and Ryzen Walkingbear, also play for the Broncos.
Askiy played on high school teams that won provincial championships two years in a row and on a team that won the 2018 University of Saskatchewan Huskies U16M volleyball open invitational championship.
Walkingbear says he’s looking forward to joining his brothers on the team.
“Askiy is such an offensive weapon,” Marsden says.“He has such a strong net game and are excited for him to contribute in this area.”
Marsden says the fact Walkingbear played on two teams that won back-to-back provincial high school championships proves he “knows how to win.”
Gammel, a libero, stands 5’ 9". He’s enrolled in the college’s business management program.
His sister, Avery Gammel, plays on the Broncos women’s volleyball team.
“We are so excited to add Ben to our team for this upcoming season,” Marsden says.
“He brings with him a tenacious way on how he plays defence. He reads the play well and gets himself in a good position to get lots of digs. His confidence in passing will certainly become a great attribute on our team.”
Muller, a middle, is 6’ 3.” He’s enrolled in the agriculture and heavy equipment program.
Over the years, Muller has been named most valuable player at several tournaments.
His brother and both of his parents have played on Broncos teams.
“My family are proud Broncos alumni,” he says.
“We are so lucky to have another Muller represent our program,” Marsden says.
“Seth is a great leaper and volleyball runs through his blood. He is a hard worker and having him a part of our program makes us so much better. (I) can't wait to see the player that Seth becomes.”
Overall, Marsden is excited for the potential of the Broncos men’s volleyball team this season.
“With our team having many players returning from last year we are in a really good position to continue to move forward,” he says.
“With the addition of these recruits we expect to be all that more competitive and also thinking about building towards the future.
“We are lucky to have the new players coming in that we do,” Marsden added.
He noted the team is developing a reputation for being competitive. That makes it easier to recruit great student athletes.
Information for this story was provided by Jaden Frank of Olds College Athletics.