For the second time in just five seasons since joining the Canada West conference, Steve Manuel has been named CIS volleyball’s coach of the year.
The Manuel-led UBC Okanagan Heat posted a 22-2 regular season record to win their first ever conference title.
UBCO went on to host the Final Four and won silver, the first Canada West medal in the school’s history.
“Steve couldn’t be more deserving of this award, he is truly a professional coach,” said UBCO director of athletics, Rob Johnson. “He has assembled a great staff and they have guided this team to a remarkable season. To be honoured by his peers and chosen over the quality coaches that work in Canada West is a fitting reflection of how Steve is perceived.”
In addition, graduating Heat middle Katie Wuttunee was named to the CIS all-Canadian first all-star team.
The third-seeded Heat is in Brandon and will open the CIS national championship tonight against the No. 6 ranked Dalhousie University Tigers.
“There are no easy matches at the national championship,” said Manuel, “but we are excited to play against a different team and happy that we did not draw a Canada West team in the first round.”
The Canada West champion Trinity Western Spartans are ranked No. 1, while the Toronto Blues are second, and the Monteal Carabins are ranked fourth.
The CIS national championship game will be played Saturday at 4 p.m. Pacific time.