Home 2018-04-18T19:42:14+00:00

NEWS & UPDATES

Justin Levere named 17UB OVA Grand Prix All-Star

The Niagara Rapids are excited to recognize Justin Levere from 17u Legend who has been selected to the OVA All-Star team this past week! Justin has been selected as the libero for this age group.

From Coach Matt:

Justin is a hard working individual who puts in the time and effort both on and off the court. He is a true team player who exemplifies leadership skills and pushes those around him every single practice. I’m extremely proud of Justin’s Commitment and passion to bettering himself everyday and receiving recognition for this award! Congrats!

Provincials: 14u Legend Girls play 15u

So proud of our 14u Legend Girls as they competed the past weekend at the 15u Provincials! The girls were perfect through two days but fell short on Sunday and were out early. Such amazing unity among the girls as they learn to play this great game!

15u Rival Girls Win Gold at Provincials

Congratulations to our 15u Rival Girls who won the gold this past weekend in the OVA Championships Division 4: Tier 1! Amazing job ladies, what a great way to end the season!

Come Coach with the Rapids!!

The Niagara Rapids are committed to offering club volleyball opportunities to as many athletes as possible. Competing on a team develops not only athletic skill but teaches commitment, discipline, perseverance and sacrifice. Being on a team also instills a sense of belonging and builds confidence. Last season, Rapids offered 23 teams that competed within the OVA competition structure. With this broad range of teams, there is an avenue for many athletes to participate at different levels of competition. There is a tryout process where teams are organized according to skill level, experience and athleticism. (see below for team designations)

Looking for Coaches for the 2017/2018 season
We are looking for both experienced and novice coaches. Rapids players are currently competing on youth national, provincial and regional teams and we are looking to increase that trend by providing the most experienced Head Coaches and Assistant Coaches we can find. Rapids alumni are on scholarship and competing for their respective universities and colleges both in Canada and in the States.
We are also looking to develop the first- time coach who has a passion for the game. Coaches should be positive and encouraging and committed to developing a team culture. The Rapids Technical Director will oversee coaching development and be a resource for both the novice coach and the experienced coach. Both Head Coach and Assistant Coach positions are available. Honorariums are available for both Head Coaches and Assistant Coaches.

No matter what your experience level, there is a place for you at the Rapids.

Rapids Legend Teams
Legend coaches work with the Rapids High Performance Teams. Most of our Legend teams are competing within the OVA Premier Division. In some age categories, there are two Rapids teams at the OVA Premier level of competition. Practices will be fast paced and demanding. Coaches will know how to get the most out of their athletes. Expectations:
• practice 2 times a week with a possible 3rd practice
• be available for position specific training clinics
• compete in 8 tournaments – 4 OVA tournaments and 4 exhibition or age-up tournaments
• participate in Brock Sports Performance training sessions
• compete at Ontario Championships
• 15-18u teams will participate in at least one US tournament and showcase.
• Nationals are optional
We are looking for coaches who have the ability/experience to push these athletes to compete and to develop them for the university and college level of play. Join us in the pursuit of excellence!!

Rapids Summit Teams
Summit coaches are pushing their athletes to the next level of excellence. Coaches are committed to skill development and know how to provide the maximum number of touches in a practice. There will be a strong competitive component in the practice. Summit athletes are strong athletes who may not have the experience (yet) to play on a Legend team but have the determination and tenacity to fight for their team’s success and their own personal development. Summit coaches have a solid foundation in skill development and have high expectations of their athletes individually and as a team. Summit coaches understand that they are developing
players to compete for Legend team positions in the following season. There is a slim possibility for a Summit athlete to be pulled up to a Legend team during a competition season.
Expectations:
• practice 2 times a week with a possible third practice
• be available for position specific training clinics
• compete in 6-8 tournaments – 4 OVA tournaments and 2-4 exhibition or age-up tournaments
• physical training sessions are strongly encouraged
• compete at Ontario Championships
• participation in US tournaments are strongly encouraged but optional
• Nationals are optional
We are looking for coaches with the ability to develop strong technical skills, who see potential and can build the confidence of their athletes. Coaches will have the ability to practice with new and experienced players.

Rapids Rival Teams
Rival coaches are good motivators and are able to define success in such a way as to build confidence into their Rapids athletes. Coaches will stress fundamentals and a competitive attitude in order to propel their teams to success. Strong communication skills are a must and coaches will work to bring unity to a diverse group of athletes. The training and touches on a Rapids Rival team will give athletes a strong advantage when trying out for their school team.
Expectations:
• practice 2 times a week
• be available for training clinics
• compete in 5 -7 tournaments – 4 OVA tournaments & at least one extra exhibition or age-up tournament
• physical training sessions are optional
• compete at Ontario Championships
• participation in US tournaments are optional
• Nationals are optional
We are looking for coaches with a strong interpersonal skill set. The Rival coach has high expectations of progress during the season and can set attainable goals throughout the year to monitor that progress.

Rapids Surge Teams
Surge coaches are at the heart of the Rapids inclusive play philosophy and are valued for their passion and commitment. A strong knowledge of the basics is a must. Coaches will know how to build a positive environment in practice where mistakes are recognized as an integral part of the learning process. There are high expectations for this team in terms of skill progression throughout the year. Coaches will recognize that the social component is essential and will work to build a strong team identity.
Expectations:
• practice 2 times a week
• be available for training clinics
• compete in 5-7 tournaments – 4 OVA tournaments and 1-3 exhibition or age-up tournaments
• physical training sessions are optional
• compete at Ontario Championships
• participation in US tournaments are encouraged
• Nationals are optional
We are looking for coaches who are strong motivators. Surge coaches will recognize the value of participation and embrace the philosophy that being a part of a team contributes to the whole development of a young person.

Rapids Hire Technical Director

Matthew Ragogna

Technical Director

The Niagara Rapids are excited to announce the hiring of Matthew Ragogna as Technical Director for the 2017/18 club season. Ragogna comes from an extensive volleyball background, including experience as both player and coach and has recently added academic research to his resume as a graduate student. “This opportunity is a dream come true”, says Ragogna. “I am excited to work with one of the largest clubs in Ontario.  The athletes in this region are talented and motivated.  I am looking forward to working with them to find success on and off the court”.

Ragogna has returned to his playing days and is the captain of the Brock Men’s Volleyball team.  Brock is making their first appearance in the OUA after a 16-year hiatus. Ragogna is currently finishing his Master’s degree following his graduation from the Brock Sport Management program in 2015. His research will be beneficial for coaches and athletes alike and focuses on understanding communication, coaching efficacy and maximizing leadership styles in a team environment.

As a coach, Ragogna is currently finishing up his High-Performance Coach certification (Level 3). He was an Assistant Coach for the Brock Women’s Volleyball team from 2013 to 2016.   He has coached for the Volleyball Canada Center of Excellence (VCCE-Niagara) program, as well as the Brock summer HPC camps.  Ragogna was named Head Coach for a Region 3 Ontario Summer Games team where he won a gold medal.   Some of the athletes that he has coached have gone on to play for regional and provincial teams.

Matt has coached with the Niagara Rapids for the past 5 years, starting as an assistant coach with Albino Pereira as well as working with the Spikes program.  Matt rose quickly to the position of head coach where his passion for the game, intensity and organizational abilities earned him the respect of players and peers alike.   His teams have earned top five finishes at the provincial and national level.

As the Technical Director, Matt will oversee coach education, development and recruitment, community integration.  Matt is scheduled to work with all of the Rapids teams throughout the upcoming season as well as continuing his role as a Niagara Rapids Head Coach.

This is an exciting new season for the Rapids and we welcome Matt as we move forward in our pursuit of excellence!!

Beth Schulz

Director Niagara Rapids Volleyball Club

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