The Douglas College Royals men's Volleyball team are jumping into league play coming off a successful 2018-19 regular season, where they topped the PACWEST standings, but failed to translate those efforts into playoff success.
A new season and a new mindset, the Royals have adopted the phrase "Pound the Stone" as their mantra, taken from best selling author, Joshua Medcalf's book Pound the Stone: 7 Lessons to Develop Grit on the Path to Mastery. Medcalf writes a story about grit, determination, and persistence through defeat to meet eventual success.
"It was a tough pill to swallow coming up short in playoffs but a powerful learning opportunity. Each guy returning from that squad has a better understanding of what it takes to prepare for performance come playoffs, and that experience will only help us this year around." Said Head coach Jay Tremonti.
The Royals return an experienced roster of players loaded with verteran leadership and talent. Jared Collin, Greg Moore, Max Haronga, and Reid Marriott all return for the Royals after garnering league success and taking home All-Star accolades last season. Marriott and Haronga also took home Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year honors respectively.
"I expect all of our returners to continue to drive the boat and lead by example day in and day out. This is the most experienced and deepest roster we've had in a number of years, and the returning guys get to bring that well-earned confidence into the gym and use it to push our group to get better" Said Tremonti.
A strong rookie recruiting class has added some depth to the roster and Tremonti is optimistic about future of the young Royals.
"They've come in with wide eyes and big ears, trying to take in all they can. We've got a strong group of returning players that have done a great job modeling what it means to be a Royal. Looking forward to seeing how the first years continue to develop and help shape our team identify for the season."
The Royals have heightened playoff expectations this year, as they will have a special chance to compete in front of their home crowd, when Douglas College hosts the PACWEST volleyball championships February 2020.
"It's definitely a privilege to be able to host the PACWEST provincials, and I know the whole Athletics Department will do a fantastic job putting on a meaningful event. We will do our best to continue to get better everyday and will make the most of the opportunity to play in front of our home crowd this February" said Tremonti.
When asked about what it would take to win a championship, Tremonti said "Keep pounding the stone, day in and day out. That's all we can do!"
The Royals first home game will be this Saturday at the New Westminster campus as they will take on the Capilano University Blues.