Owen Cotito might be described by some as a quick thinker— he's able to solve the Rubik's Cube in under a minute. But the six-foot-five setter from Kamloops can also move pretty quickly.
Cotito is the latest high school player to sign with head coach Brad Hudson's UBCO Heat men’s volleyball squad.
Cotito links his ability to complete the best-selling puzzle to his on-court play by connecting the skill of solving problems quickly and using his hands with speed and precision to find a solution.
“To add Owen to this year’s recruiting class is a coup,” Hudson said at Goheat.ca. “What Owen lacks in experience he makes up for in promise. There's simply so much potential with him it’s impossible to ignore. There are very few setters in our conference with Owen’s length and athleticism. He moves effortlessly around the court and already has a great feel for the ball.”
Academics also played a big role on Cotito’s decision to play his post secondary volleyball in Kelowna. He plans to enroll in the Faculty of Management and said earning his degree at UBCO will kick start that journey.
“Academically, it seems like a great school with a close-knit campus and a great reputation,” Cotito said. “I decided I wanted to attend UBC Okanagan because I believe that is what will be best for me. Athletically, I want to be at UBC Okanagan because it has a volleyball program full of athletes and coaches that I feel I can learn a ton from.”
Cotito is a multi-sport star with Sa Hali high school, and a continual member of the school’s honour roll. As the starting setter of the Sabres, he has piloted his team to high school titles in 2017 and 2018.
With the Kamloops Volleyball Association Pack club team, he has also received the school’s major athletic award, the Sabres Super Block Award. Cotito has also been a contributor on his school’s soccer team every year since Grade 8, winning two provincial silver medals and a fourth-place finish last fall.
Cotito is the fifth prep star to commit to the Heat for next fall.
Middle Luke Tiegen and outside hitters Noah Carlson and Aaron Voth have also signed on with UBCO for 2019.
Lake country libero Ben Magel has also recently committed to coach Hudson and the Heat. The Canada West men's volleyball regular season schedule for these recruits and the rest of the Heat squad will be released on June 12.