BURLINGTON, Ont. – Danny Demyanenko (Toronto, Ont.), a fifth-year middle from the McMaster Marauders, was named the West Division Player of the Year in Ontario University Athletics (OUA) men's volleyball on Thursday morning.
Other OUA major award recipients were also announced, including Rookie of the Year from Brock, right side John Elgersma (Wellandport, Ont.); Badgers left side Matthew Ragogna (Tottenham, Ont.) has earned the Dale Iwanoczko Sportsman Award for outstanding achievement in volleyball, academics and community involvement; and McMaster bench boss Dave Preston is the OUA West Division Coach of the Year for the second time in three seasons.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Danny Demyanenko, McMaster
For the second time in his career, Demyanenko has been named the Player of the Year after he finished the season second in hitting percentage (.507) and fourth averaging 0.48 service aces per set.
As a member of the powerhouse Marauders, the Toronto, Ont. native also ranked inside the top ten with 0.98 blocks per set, while committing only one blocking error all season long. In 16 matches this season for McMaster, Demyanenko finished just outside the top 10 averaging 3.7 points per set.
Demyanenko becomes the fourth straight Marauders player to capture the award and first person to earn the honours twice in their career since former Ryerson Ram Ryan Vandenburg did so in back-to-back seasons from 2004-2006.
Demyanenko will receive a customized OUA Player of the Year ring courtesy of Baron Championship Rings to commemorate his outstanding 2016-17 season.
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: John Elgersma, Brock
After the rebirth of the program this year, the future continues to look bright for the Badgers as Elgersma has been named OUA West Division Rookie of the Year.
Elgersma, a 6-foot-9 right side, appeared in 13 matches in his rookie season and finished the year inside the top 10 with 0.35 service aces per set. When he was on the court, the Wellandport, Ont. native was a dominant force and averaged 3.3 points per set, the 13th best mark in the conference.
As dangerous at the net as he was from the service line, Elgersma ranked just inside the top 10 with 19 solo blocks this season, despite playing just 43 total sets.
Elgersma becomes the first Brock student-athlete to win the award.
DALE IWANOCZKO AWARD (volleyball, academics & community service): Matthew Ragogna, Brock
An instrumental member in re-establishing the Brock Badgers men's volleyball team this season, Ragogna has made an impact both on and off the court and is this year's recipient of the prestigious Dale Iwanoczko Sportsman Award.
To say Ragogna lives and breathes volleyball is a gross understatement.
In the community, he has volunteered for the past five years with the Niagara Rapids Volleyball Club and is currently an assistant coach with the 6U Boys team. With his season over, Ragogna will now resume full-time coaching duties with the team. Prior to joining the Brock men's team this season, the Tottenham, Ont. native was an assistant coach with the Badgers women's program.
Along with some of his Badgers teammates, the 6-foot-3 left side has organized multiple clinics with youth boys teams and also runs free volleyball clinics for physical education classes in elementary schools across the District School Board of Niagara.
Appearing in 17 games this season, Ragogna ranked third on the Badgers with 1.43 kills per set to go along and finished the year with 105 points.
Like Elgersma, Ragogna also becomes the first member of the Badgers to earn the honours.
COACH OF THE YEAR: Dave Preston, McMaster
Preston, who was also the OUA Coach of the Year in 2007-08, 2012-13 and 2014-15, guided the Marauders to a perfect 17-0 record and the right to host the OUA Final Four for a fifth straight season.
Under the guidance of Preston, the Marauders, who are currently the third ranked team in the country, led the OUA with a hitting average of .321, while committing a U SPORTS low 212 errors. Their suffocating pressure on opposing teams began at the service line, where Mac led the conference with 114 aces in 2016-17.
Preston becomes the first coach to win the award four times in his career since Mustangs bench boss Jim Sage, won his fourth in 2011-12.
OUA ALL-STAR AND ALL-ROOKIE TEAMS
Both the OUA West Division first- and second-team all-stars, as well as the OUA all-rookies were also announced on Thursday morning.
Joining Danny Demyanenko as OUA first-team all-stars are three of his Marauders teammates outside hitters Jayson McCarthy (Oshawa, Ont.), Andrew Richards (London, Ont.) and Brandon Koppers (Georgetown, Ont.), Waterloo Warriors middle Jordan McConkey (Stratford, Ont.) and right side Braden Cok (Waterloo, Ont.) and from the Gryphons middle blocker Kendrick Kerr (Georgetown, Ont.).
The OUA second-team for 2016-17 is made up of Mustangs outside hitter Zeid Hamadeh (Ottawa, Ont.) and middles Chris Newcombe (Tavistock, Ont.) and Mike Choja (London, Ont.), Windsor left side John Moate (Oakville, Ont.) and right side Brad Gyemi (Tecumseh, Ont.), Guelph setter Samuel Kloke (Whitby, Ont.) and from Brock Marceio Correa (Indaiatuba, Brazil).
In addition to OUA Rookie of the Year, Brock's John Elgersma, the all-rookie team is comprised of Warriors middle Matthew Mawdsley (London, Ont.) and left side Kevin Lebreux (Cumberland, Ont.), from the Windsor Lancers left side Pierce Johnson (Chatham, Ont.) and setter Nolan Langley (Uxbridge, Ont.), as well as libero Jordan Pereira (St. Catherines, Ont.) and setter David Doty (London, Ont.) from the Marauders.
OUA Major Award Winners
Player of the Year: Danny Demyanenko – McMaster Marauders
Rookie of the Year: John Elgersma – Brock Badgers
Award of Merit: Matthew Ragogna – Brock Badgers
Coach of the Year: Dave Preston – McMaster Marauders
OUA First-Team All-Stars
Danny Demyanenko – McMaster Marauders
Jayson McCarthy – McMaster Marauders
Andrew Richards – McMaster Marauders
Brandon Koppers – McMaster Marauders
Braden Cok – Waterloo Warriors
Jordan McConkey – Waterloo Warriors
Kendrick Kerr – Guelph Gryphons
OUA Second-Team All-Stars
Zeid Hamadeh – Western Mustangs
Chris Newcombe – Western Mustangs
Mike Choja – Western Mustangs
John Moate – Windsor Lancers
Brad Gyemi – Windsor Lancers
Samuel Kloke – Guelph Gryphons
Marcelo Correa – Brock Badgers
OUA All-Rookie Team
John Elgersma – Brock Badgers
Matthew Mawdsley – Waterloo Warriors
Kevin Lebreux – Waterloo Warriors
Pierce Johnson – Windsor Lancers
Nolan Langley – Windsor Lancers
Jordan Pereira – McMaster Marauders
David Doty – McMaster Marauders