With the cancellation of the remainder of the spring season and the winter championships, at least one Wells College senior spring student-athlete will be highlighted each weekend. Today's featured student-athlete is senior Caden O'Loughlin from the men's volleyball team.
Caden is a computer science and math major from Louisville, Ky., and was the team's lead attacker for the Express. Caden's versatility was such that he set career records at Wells in top categories both offensively and defensively.
Wells head men's volleyball coach Jim Nichols had the following to say about Caden, "Caden is an amazing team leader. Much of the success of the Express can be attributed to Caden's drive and leadership. He was voted team captain for three years and is the Wells College all-time career leader in kills, digs and aces, as well as career total points. All of the career records Caden reached were with an abbreviated 2020 season. Caden also holds the single season record for kills from 2019, which was also second in the nation that year. Caden was a joy to coach and he always had a great insight and feel for the game and I feel sure that he will be a coach someday himself. If you were going to start a team or a program, Caden would be your guy."
Over his career at Wells, Caden appeared in 119 matches and played in 426 sets. He finished as the school's all-time leader in career kills with 1,398; career digs with 853; career service aces with 152 and career points with 1,641. He also holds the single season record in kills with 507. In addition, Caden recorded 111 assists and 143 total blocks. Caden generated over 3,500 total attacks with a career attack percentage at .248.
During the shortened 2020 season, Caden appeared in 21 matches and played in 73 sets and finished with 219 kills, 119 digs, 28 service aces, 19 assists and 11 total blocks, while scoring 254.5 points. Caden's season attack percentage was .230.
In addition, Caden aided the athletics department as an event announcer.
Why did you choose Wells College?
I think Wells chose me. Men's volleyball, especially in Kentucky, is not a real sport. My high school didn't offer it and the opportunities are limited. I wanted something different and I have a huge passion for volleyball. The previous coach recruited me and very few other places did. I really liked the guys on the team and the coach; it seemed easy to get comfortable in such a small setting. I think somehow, I was destined to end up at Wells College.
What is your favorite memory at Wells College as a student-athlete?
My favorite memory when I look back on my college volleyball career are the three matches against LBC, Southern Virginia, and Stevens College. All the hard work that was asked of me and my teammates came together. With our backs up against the wall, we played our best. Each of those matches was played at a high level and I remember every second. It was nice to put the little school on the pond on the map for D3 men's volleyball.
What are your plans after Wells College?
My plans after Wells are to move home and try to find work. I will continue playing beach volleyball, and hopefully with play with or against my brothers from the team soon.
What advice would you give to the next person wearing your number?
My advice would be to remember what got us to the tournament. Remember how much you have grown as a player and person since being at Wells. Also continue to grow in all aspects of life, nothing is handed to you. Remember the people who gave you tough love, whenever it is hard to work for you, work for them.
What will you miss the most about being a student-athlete at Wells College?
The thing I will miss most is very easy, my teammates. Good days or bad, it was nice to turn off my brain and get to work and do something we all cared a lot about. I will remember matches, but I will not forget my friendships, the meals we shared and the good times we had. All the way from the 'HALOS,' bus trips, outdoor day, to 'it couldn't be me.' Thank-you for so many unforgettable moments. I love you. Thank you!