February 26, 2018

ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: Gabriel Domecus (’17)

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Feb. 26, 2018

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Originally from Vallejo, Calif., Gabriel Domecus finished his career in Columbus as a two time AVCA All-American and is scattered across the program record book. Domecus sits second all-time in career digs (839) and his 250 digs in 2016 are the fourth-highest season total in Buckeye lore. As a freshman, Domecus made an appearance in every match for the Buckeyes but then started to find his groove in the libero jersey as a sophomore. With 93 matches played in the off-colored jersey, he is one of the all-time best for the Scarlet and Gray.

During his final two seasons, he started every match for the Buckeyes. Each year ended with Domecus receiving both conference and AVCA recognition, both regular season and tournament conference championships, and back-to-back NCAA Championships. Ohio State amassed an 85-13 record in Domecus’ final three seasons.

Below is a first-person update from Domecus:

Greetings from the North Pole! Well close enough anyways. Following my graduation in August, I quickly embarked on my new journey to Finland to play volleyball professionally for Perungan Pojat Team Lakkapää. I wasn’t initially anticipating playing overseas because I’ve always heard that getting picked up as a libero was fairly difficult. However, thanks to some helpful contacts and an awesome agent I was able to secure a team. My team is located in Rovaniemi, which is located in Northern Finland, part of the Arctic Circle. Here is a quick briefing on how the Arctic life is treating a Californian!

I’m currently almost done with my very first professional season. The regular season will quickly be coming to a close in early March. My team is in the middle of the pack in the league standings and is looking to secure a playoff spot. This season has been very long compared to what things were like in college. We began in September and could potentially play all the way til the end of April, depending on our playoff run. Playoffs are even longer than what I was used to in the NCAA. The first round is a best of five match series and the semi finals and finals both consist of a best of seven match series! Talk about a lot of volleyball just in playoffs! With the season slowly coming to a close, I have had the chance of reflecting on my time in Finland over the past seven months. It has been incredibly cold and thankfully Ohio weather somewhat prepared me a little for living in colder weather. I was incredibly lucky to land on such a great team with five other North American players. Even though the weather has been brutal from time to time Finland is truly a beautiful country and I’m happy I was able to experience this unique opportunity!

I believe that any players that have that chance to try and play overseas should definitely take advantage and put in the full effort of being discovered by coaches overseas. Even though this lifestyle is not for everyone (being abroad for nine months) I encourage at least giving it a shot! Words cannot even describe how much I miss my family, friends, and girlfriend but I’m incredibly thankful that they have made it easy for me to follow my dream. I’m not 100% positive whether I will be overseas again next year, but if I am I look forward to sharing future experiences with the amazing buckeye fans. Thank you for taking the time to follow my journey. Go Bucks!