Alex Swiatlowski, from the recently crowned Oak Bay AAA Boys Volleyball team, has committed to play for the UBC Okanagan Heat in the 2012-13 season. The 6’7’’ outside hitter was a key piece of the team that sat atop the rankings for the entire season and then claimed the crown against the Earl Marriot Mariners on Dec. 3, 2011 at UBC’s Okanagan campus. Swiatlowski received First-Team All-Star honours for his efforts in the tournament.
Swiatlowski’s volleyball resume includes 2007/2008/2009 and 2011 City and Island champion, 2008 U14 provincial silver medal, 2009 provincial champion, 2010 Island silver medalist, 2010 U16 national volleyball bronze medalist, 2011 UBC Invitational Champion, and (Island championship volleyball MVP and two-time all-star), member of the 2010 Volleyball B.C. Team.
Swiatlowski has expressed his interest in UBC’s science program
“UBC Okanagan is well known for its outstanding science programs and a high standard of achievement. Wanting to move into the medical field, I believe that UBCO is simply the best option,” says Swiatlowski.
Alongside his academic ambitions, Swiatlowski is excited for the opportunity to compete on the highest level.
“Having the ability to play at the CIS level for volleyball has been one of my dreams from the start,” says Swiatlowski. “It is quite a unique opportunity to transition to the CIS level with the team. After meeting with the team and staff it has become clear that they are like a family. Win or lose, they are a team, and that is very important to me. To me, UBC Okanagan means that I will be able to study and compete at the highest level without sacrificing one or the other.”
Swiatlowski’s coach at Oak Bay, Al Carmichael, has high hopes for him in the years to come.
“Alex is one of those few kids who came through the system who are truly ready to play at the CIS level in their first year,” says Carmichael. “He is mature, dedicated and a student of the game. Academically, he is one of the strongest student-athletes we’ve had the pleasure to work with, consistently in the mid 90s.
“Alex has been instrumental in our program's success to date, playing both middle and outside. A dominant blocker and very hard attacker, yet is always willing to receive feedback and follow instructions. He has consistently given back to the game: he volunteers to coach at the elementary and middle-school age, and has coached 14U club. He officiates. He is the first to set the equipment, and the first to take it down. UBC Okanagan will definitely not regret investing in this student athlete. They will receive much more in return.”
Swiatlowski is the first recruit UBC Okanagan head coach Greg Poitras has signed for the upcoming season and he is excited about adding a player as skilled as Swiatlowski.
“We feel great about Alex coming to UBC Okanagan. Alex is a big, athletic guy who can play multiple positions. For someone his size, at 6’7, his skills are very good for a young volleyball player,” says Poitras. “His desire to excel in everything he does and his commitment to meeting all of his responsibilities separated him from others during this recruiting process. We are thrilled to have him in our program.”
For a new team in the CIS, the Heat have a number of senior players that will be moving on within the next year or two that log serious floor time right now as Preston Tucker, Mark Broome and Spencer Brown are in their fifth and final year. Nate Speijer, Riley McFarland and Brett Uniat are all currently in their fourth year.