The Canadian National Men’s National Volleyball Team captured the FIVB World League Bronze medal, with a roster featuring three University of Alberta Golden Bears alumni. Brett Walsh, Ryley Barnes, and Jason DeRocco were all on the Canadian men’s roster, who captured the medal with a 3-1 (18-25, 25-20, 25-22, 25-21) win over the United States, Saturday night in Curitiba, Brazil.
"It's been incredible to watch our alumni contribute to an historic and unprecedented accomplishment in Volleyball Canada's history." said Golden Bears volleyball associate coach Brock Davidiuk. "For us, it's always fulfilling to see our guys move on to the international level both professionally and with the national team." Jason has been there a long time and really made a career for himself. Ryley has really made a stamp on the internationally scene in a very short amount of time, and we saw that during the World League finals. Having Brett and Ryley move so quickly onto the Senior team speaks volumes for the commitment to their craft both through their training with us and what they've learned since they left. We are very proud to watch these former Golden Bears representing the University of Alberta and the Canadian National team so well."
The bronze medal is the highest ever placing for the Canadian’s at the event, with the previous best being a fifth place finish in 2013. Team Captain Gord Perrin led Canada with 13 points, while Barnes scored 10 points after entering the match after the first set.
Canada went 6-5 during pool play, before being dispatched in semifinal by Team France in four sets. France eventually defeated the Brazilians in five sets to win the FIVB World League Championship. The four-set win over the Americans was the second win for Canada over their North American rival, after defeating them 3-2 during the group stage. The Americans are ranked third in the world, while the Canadians entered the summer tournament ranked eighth.
Photo Courtesy of Volleyball Canada