Costa, a breath of fresh air for the girls of the Rouge et Or

The players of Laval University’s women’s volleyball team see Danny Da Costa as a “fresh wind” as coach of the Rouge et Or after a tough season where former coach Olivier Caron, whose relations were not looking good with his players, left in troubled circumstances in December.
“The change of coach is a breath of fresh air,” said Maud Chapleau Tuesday, on the sidelines of the press conference SSQ Challenge to be held Saturday at the PEPS to kick off the season. The attacker, however, did not want to dwell on Caron’s departure. “I do not have the right to talk about it, because all the players had to sign sheets where one engaged to keep silence on it”, she added, admitting however that certain players had thought leave the team last year. “But I’m not part of it,” she says.

“Some girls, including experienced players, told me it was the first year they did not feel stressed,” says Da Costa, adding that the relationship between the players and Justin Boudreault, who did the acting before his arrival, were excellent.


“I think there’s enough stress in a match situation that you do not have to go anywhere else,” says the new coach. “But there is still a way to train that remains important,” says the one who had to start from scratch after having arrived in May in addition to having to deal with a reduced alignment of 12 players, including three liberos, two passers and only seven attackers, all positions combined.

“It’s a challenge to arrive at the last minute to get to know the girls who had three coaches in a year. Some graduated, some left, some came close to leaving, but the organization eventually managed to keep them. I now need to establish a mode of operation. I try things with my lineup that still has some good third and fourth year players like Maud Chapleau, Anne-Sophie Tanguay and Emie Gaboury. I will go one game at a time. There is team cohesion and a relationship with the coaching staff to rebuild. ”

Unconventional system

Da Costa will also have to build a new gaming system with reduced numbers to avoid injuries that could leave the team in a precarious situation. “At the university, we play every week, so I give them more recovery time. For the rest, I watched a lot of videos from last year to see the strengths and weaknesses and I saw among other things that if we did not have a good first contact, the opponent always knew where the ball was going to. I’m trying to find solutions to this with a new system that is not a standard system, “he said, refraining from giving details of his strategy.

Da Costa’s way of seeing things is appreciated by Maud Chapleau, the top scorer of her conference last year and a member of the first all-star team at the Réseau de sport étudiant du Québec for the second year in a row. “I think his unconventional game system is perfect for our team,” said the one who wants to turn the page on last year, where the Rouge et Or did not reach the Quebec final. “It was the first time since I was with the team and I do not feel like reliving that,” she says, adding that she is not putting all the pressure on her shoulders anyway. “I know I have to keep my leadership role. Pressure, there is, but I try not to put more, because I do not want it to harm my game, “she concludes.

For François Bégin, chairman of the board of the Rouge et Or volleyball club, to have the players sign documents preventing them from commenting in any way on the departure of former coach Olivier Caron in troubled circumstances was the right way to do things, even if it’s not common practice in the sports world. “Me, I come from the artistic field, from the field of dance, so I can not say how it happens elsewhere in the sport. But that was the best way to go. It was a unique situation and what was done was done for the benefit of everyone. I have no regrets on how to do it, “he commented briefly on the sidelines of the club’s press conference on Tuesday.

After the departure of Chilean forward-receiver Vicente Ignacio Parraguire Villalobos, aka Vicho, who has exhausted all his years of eligibility, the coach of the Rouge et Or men’s volleyball team, Pascal Clément, wanted to offer a challenge to his players after a season when they won bronze at the Canadian championships.

“Whereas last year, the podium was a goal, for me this year is the challenge. An objective was a bit of a goal, but this year, I feel like offering to try to do as well as last year or even better, “said the coach in a press briefing.

Hard to replace

“Who will replace” Vicho “? There is an old saying that nobody is irreplaceable, but “Vicho” is a “bastard” that came from the end of the world, a player and an exceptional human being. However, in the past, Gino Brousseau, Eric Le Breton, Karl de Grandpré and Michel Cazes have been replaced. However, they are big shoes to put on and I think they can do it as a team, “said the coach, who has high hopes for Alexandre Obomsawin to do some of the work that was previously done” Vicho “.

“We saw Alexandre emerge at the national championship. It was felt in his area. His new challenge will be to channel and share this level of play to other players and assume some form of leadership. He has reached his physical maturity and, in addition, he trained all summer. It is not very big, but it is very powerful and now we see signs of it in service. In volleyball, service is a weapon of mass destruction and Alexander has greatly improved his. His outstanding services from last year have become the norm. The “bombs” at 105 km / h, it does not look any more difficult, so I say, do you try 110 km / h? The day he will reach that, it’ll be something, “the coach analyzes.

Teammate and friend

Libero Remi Cadoret will also miss “Vicho” who was also his roommate for two years. “Not just for volleyball, but for the human side as well. He played for me the role of a big brother and in the team, it was the go to guy. When we were in the m …, we sent the ball to “Vicho” “, he illustrates, adding that he still sees a good season in front of him despite the departure of his friend with the rise of Obomsawin and the arrival of new talented players like Nicolas Fortin.

“I think a medal at the Canadian championships at the University of Manitoba is still an achievable goal. The Quebec Conference, which includes Laval, Montreal, Sherbrooke, New Brunswick and Dalhousie Universities, has two assured spots for the Canadian Championships, while the Ontario and Western Conferences have three seats for one. twenty teams each, “he says.

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