Jr. Heat product Brook Ure signs with Red Deer Queens

The RDC Queens are swinging big with their recruiting class for the 2018-2019 Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference Women’s Volleyball season.

That’s more or less out of necessity after the Queens lost the majority of their starting six from last season.

One of the top hitters in the ACAC, Miranda Dawe graduated as well as setter Chanelle Kayser who is top five all-time is ACAC assists. Middle Megan Schmidt is also graduating, while McKenna Barthel, Hanna Delemont and Naomi Jardine are all transferring to complete their education.

Queens head coach Chris Wandler officially announced earlier this week that Erin Neufeldt would join the team next year, on outside hitter who played for the SAIT Trojans last year. He’s also got his eye on a few other transfers from the U.S. that he thinks will bolster the lineup even more for next season.

“(Erin) is a very athletic volleyball player that has some good experience and fill in a very good gap that’s missing for us, we’re excited about her,” Wandler said.

“Hopefully it will add a little bit of life and rejuvenation to the program, that’s always exciting too.”

Neufeldt averaged two kills per set with the Trojans and had 125 in 61 sets over the course of the season.

Alongside that experience, the RDC Queens coach also brought in local outside hitter Emma Holmes. He picked up Parres Holliday of Cochrane and middle Brook Ure from Summerland, B.C., as pieces to help add some depth to their roster.

All three bring a unique dynamic that makes next year exciting for Wandler.

“Parres is a nice addition, is an overall skilled player. Has some work to do on the physical side of things. Her knowledge of the game is good and she adds some quality depth to us,” Wandler said of Holliday.

“(Brook) is extremely athletic. Bouncy athletic. She has a lot of untapped volleyball skills. What we see from her is a very good first step and gets off the floor really fast.”

Holmes was a gold medalist with the Lindsay Thurber Raiders at the 4A Alberta Schools Athletic Association Provincials last year.

The Queens will also hold a mini-training camp on June 9-10 for the new group as a sort of orientation.

“We bring everybody in and it gets everybody to know each other right away so there isn’t that awkwardness in September. We get to talk about the things we’ll teach (this season) so it’s not such a big overload,” Wandler added.

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