Fraser Valley – The University of the Fraser Valley women’s volleyball team is welcoming six new recruits as they gear up for the 2019-20 season.

The Cascades’ class includes four veteran transfers – Sadie Wilson, Sedona Arabsky, Ashley Huberts and Sarah Brownlee – and a pair of rookies from Saskatoon, Haley Poier and Megan Wegren.

The team embarks on its final PACWEST season next week as they host the Columbia Bible College Bearcats in their home opener on Friday, Oct. 11. In 2020, the program is moving up to the Canada West conference.

Sadie Wilson

6’1” outside hitter, Vancouver B.C.

Prince of Wales Secondary / Mount Royal

Wilson brings a wealth of experience, with prior stops in the PACWEST (Vancouver Island University, 2016-18) and Canada West (Mount Royal, 2018-19). She had an outstanding run with the VIU Mariners, earning conference all-rookie honours in 2016-17 and helping the squad win a CCAA national championship as a sophomore. She moved on to Mount Royal last season, seeing action in 21 matches with the Cougars. Wilson also had an outstanding prep career, leading her high school team to the Vancouver city championship in 2015 and earning an 18U provincial championship with BCO Volleyball Club in 2016.

Cascades head coach Janelle Rozema noted that Wilson’s Canada West experience will stand the program in good stead as is makes the transition next year.

“Sadie is a physical specimen,” Rozema said. “She’s playing at the height of Canada West – her block touch and spike touch would have to be among the best in the conference. She’s got high energy, she works hard, she’s engaged, and very positive.”

“I chose UFV because it’s near my hometown, and I’m really good friends with (Cascades outside hitter) Amanda Matsui who has been trying to get me to come here for a few years,” said Wilson, who will redshirt this season while working towards a degree in kinesiology with a psychology minor. “I would love to leave UFV with a national championship.”

Sedona Arabsky

6’0” middle, Surrey B.C.

Lord Tweedsmuir Secondary / Trinity Western

Arabsky, likewise, boasts a Canada West pedigree – she was a rookie on last season’s Trinity Western Spartans squad which won the CW championship. She had a highly decorated high school career, earning an all-star nod at the B.C. championships in 2017, and she ranked No. 11 on VarsityLetters.ca’s Super 15 list of the province’s top graduating women’s volleyball players in her senior year. She helped Team B.C. win a national age-class title in 2016, and she also excelled at basketball, winning a defensive player of the year award as a high schooler.

Rozema loves that Arabsky raises her game when the pressure is on.

“Sedona has a killer instinct, and she’s trustworthy and reliable,” she said. “When a point really matters, I’m very comfortable giving her the ball. She’s very mature, and does a good job bringing out the best in the players around her. She holds them accountable in a positive way. She’s a very bright player, very smart, and she’ll bring a very good game-plan execution.”

“I chose UFV because some of my closest friends are here, and hearing that this team was moving up to U SPORTS was intriguing,” said Arabsky, who is enrolled in Arts.

Haley Poier

5’10” setter, Saskatoon SK

Aden Bowman Collegiate

Poier was a two-sport standout with Saskatoon’s Aden Bowman Bears, earning team MVP awards for volleyball and basketball, and helping her hoops squad to the city championship in 2018. She also excelled on the club scene, leading Smash Volleyball to provincial titles in 2014, 2016 and 2018. She played for Team Saskatchewan in volleyball for two summers, earning team MVP honours at the national championships.

“Haley has a calming presence on the court,” Rozema said. “She’s a really natural setter in terms of physique and hands, and she puts her hitters in a really good position to score. She leads by physical example, and is very determined to improve and apply changes to her game. She’s really coachable, moldable, and open to learning from her older teammates. She fits in really well as a rookie that way. She’s been one of our most improved players in the first month.”

“I chose UFV because I really liked the fact that it was in the mountains, and it was an exciting opportunity that I couldn’t pass up,” said Poier, who is enrolled in General Studies. “My dreams and goals for my time with the Cascades are to win nationals this year and for us to be able to compete with the top teams in U SPORTS eventually.”

Ashley Huberts

5’10” outside hitter, Abbotsford B.C.

Mennonite Educational Institute / College of the Rockies

Huberts, a hometown Abbotsford product, spent her prep career with the MEI Eagles, winning back-to-back B.C. AA championships in 2015 and 2016, and earning tournament MVP in her Grade 11 season. She also won club provincials in her Grade 9 and 11 years with Airborne Volleyball Club, and is a two-time provincial beach volleyball champ. She knows what it takes to compete in the PACWEST, having spent the 2017-18 season with the College of the Rockies Avalanche.

“Ashley comes in as an experienced player,” Rozema noted. “She has a killer instinct, and she wants to compete – she’s very competitive. She’s a good all-around player. She’s positive to her teammates, a good communicator who’s willing to do whatever the team needs.”

“I practiced with the Cascades last year and absolutely loved it,” explained Huberts, who is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in psychology. “The community has been awesome and the classes have been great as well. I love being back home with friends and family.

“I’d love to win the CCAA nationals this year, and go into U SPORTS next season competing well right away, working our way up to eventually winning a national championship.”

Sarah Brownlee

5’11” setter, Langley B.C.

Langley Christian / Briercrest College

Brownlee spent last season with the Briercrest Clippers, helping the Caronport, Sask.-based program to an ACAC silver medal and a fourth-place finish at CCAA nationals. She had a successful high school career, helping the Langley Christian Lightning win gold at the 2017 B.C. AA championships, and she was part of Team B.C. in 2016.

“Sarah has a very colourful personality and brings a lot of fun to the game,” Rozema said. “She’s very competitive, and has a desire to win. She brings really good energy on the court and on the bench. Her positive energy is very consistent no matter what role she’s playing. She’s open-minded and coachable, and interested in improving her game. She’s also a great blocker as a setter.”

“UFV offers me a great opportunity to play on a local university team and to complete my degree,” said Brownlee, who is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree. “I believe this team will only continue to grow in skill and community as we continue on to U SPORTS next year.”

Megan Wegren

5’10” outside hitter, Saskatoon SK

Aden Bowman Collegiate

Wegren joins fellow Aden Bowman classmate Poier with the Cascades, and brings with her a strong volleyball resumé at the high school and club level. She won provincial club titles in 2016 and 2018 with Smash Volleyball, and spent three summers with Team Saskatchewan. She also earned Aden Bowman volleyball team MVP honours her senior year.

“It’s evident how much Megan enjoys the game and coming to practice to improve,” Rozema said. “She’s loyal and willing to do whatever her team needs. She has a really heavy swing, and a variety of shots which make her a very versatile attacker.”

“I chose UFV because I had the unique opportunity to move with my good friend Haley, as well as the chance to continue playing the sport I love,” Wegren said. “I was looking for an adventure, and moving to B.C. was definitely that. I hope to grow as a person, student and athlete, get good grades and excel in everything I do.”

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