RDC Kings volleyball outsider hitter Regan Fathers named Canadian Collegiate Player of the Year

The CCAA Men’s Volleyball National Championships gets underway at 1 p.m. Thursday

RDC Kings right side Regan Fathers added another chapter to his growing volleyball legacy Wednesday.

The six-foot-six, East Fremantle, Western Australia native in his fifth and final year of college volleyball eligibility, capped it off with a few special individual accolades.

At the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association Men’s Volleyball National Championship awards banquet, Fathers was named Player of the Year and a CCAA All-Canadian.

“It’s great for the acknowledgment obviously. Five years of hard work put in,” Fathers said.

“It’s a great personal goal but we still have three potential games left, which the goal at the end of those games is the one I want the most right now. While this is good, there’s one more to get.”

He beat out Reid Marriott of Douglas College, Wesley Lau from Conestoga College, Zane Hamilton of University of New Brunswick-St. John, and Nicolas Fortin from Cégep Limoilou for the Player of the Year award.

Fathers had an outstanding season, leading the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference with 5.37 kills per set, a full kill more than second best. He had 435 kills total, 69 more than Carter Hansen of Lethbridge College. Over his career at RDC, Fathers amassed 863 kills, just ahead of his former teammate Tim Finnigan. When the two played together back in Fathers’ first season, the veteran had some simple advice.

“This just being my fifth year, just making the absolute most of the opportunity I have. I remember one of my old teammates, Tim Finnigan, when I was in my first year, it was his fifth and he was like ‘five years is going to go by faster than you think,’” Fathers recalled.

“Sure enough, here I am with three days left of my career, it’s a bit surreal. Remembering it with a good group of guys.”

Along with the Player of the Year nominees, Fathers joined Simon Friesen (Capilano University), Mitchell Lewington (NAIT), Michel Leblanc (Le Collège La Cité), Alex Tournier (Cégep de L’Outaouais) and Brett Butler (Holland College) as All-Canadians.

The Kings are set to host the CCAA Men’s Volleyball National Championship from March 7-9 at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre. The Kings open the tournament Thursday at 6 p.m. when they face off with the will play the 2018 CCAA Champions, the Limoilou Titans.

In the final CCAA rankings on Feb. 19, the Kings were ranked third, while the Titans were 10th. At Christmas in an exhibition tournament, RDC swept the Titans in three straight games.

“A lot of history between the two of us. Both of us are great teams. We just have to go out firing,” Fathers added.

“There’s going to be a lot of nerves with a big crowd. A lot of home pressure. We just have to go out and stay relaxed.”

Championship play gets underway at 1 p.m. when the Holland Hurricanes take on the Fanshawe Falcons.

Email sports tips to Byron Hackett

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