In PACWEST volleyball action this past weekend, the Camosun College Chargers travelled to Abbotsford to take on the CBC Bearcats in their first road games of the season. While the trip produced only one win, it served as a good learning experience for the teams which have another 10 weeks of league action ahead of them.
The Chargers women split their two weekend matches against CBC falling to a 3-1 defeat on Friday (21-15, 25-15, 25-20, 25-19) and turning around to win in four on Saturday (25-13, 25-23, 15-25, 25-22).
“Our game is about growth and adjustment,” commented Chargers Head Coach Chris Dahl. “On Friday night, CBC’s April Van Wieren proved to be a handful for us. Moving from Friday to Saturday we wanted to do a better job of controlling her impact on the match. To do this we focused on what we needed to do before she had a chance to become part of their offense as opposed to reacting to her play. We had to serve well and challenge our opposition on every return of the ball. The athletes responded very well on Saturday serving fourteen aces as a team, led by first year setter Kelsey Clarke with four.”
Coach Dahl added, “As a coach, I enjoy the doubleheader weekend format. If I felt that our program underperformed or fell short of expectation on the first night, we have the opportunity to adjust a number of things from game plan to our line-up. Conversely, if you succeed in accomplishing your goals for the match on Friday, your challenge is to maintain that level of performance and anticipate/prepare for your opponent’s adjustments to the best of your ability. The same applies to our athletes. I take a lot of positives from our response on the second day versus CBC.”
On the men’s side, going up against the defending National Champion Bearcats proved to be a good test for the Chargers who went down 3-0 on Friday (25-21, 25-20, 25-20) and 3-1 (12-25, 25-22, 25-20, 25-20) on Saturday.
“It was a see-saw battle in each of the sets with both teams trading big hits and even bigger blocks,” said Chargers Head Coach Charles Parkinson. “In the end though, it was the play of CBC after 20 points that allowed them to push forward for the win. We looked solid for most of the match but in each of the sets allowed a three or four point CBC run in a single rotation, which meant we were always playing from behind. Despite furious rallies to catch up, this was all the margin the Bearcats needed.”
On Saturday, the Chargers showed just how good they can be, taking the first set 25-13 with the strength of excellent serving, disciplined blocking and very aggressive transition play. Play cooled off in the second set and to the credit of CBC they hung on and again showed their experience with rock solid play from 20-25 points in each of the next three sets to take the match in four.
Up next, the Chargers travel to Cranbrook to take on the College of the Rockies Avalanche.
“The matches this past weekend highlighted how competitive the league is this season and how just a simple mistake or two here and there can change the outcome of sets and matches,” said Coach Parkinson. “Going into the battle against College of the Rockies this weekend, this time in their home gym, the Chargers have to minimize the effects of the long road trip to Cranbrook, return to a solid passing game and neutralize the play of 7’0″ COTR middle attacker Taylor Verboom. In addition, injured COTR setter Linford Bennett from Melbourne Australia will return to action following an ankle sprain and should run a much more unpredictable offense.”
Watch the matches LIVE on Sports Canada TV
Fri, Nov. 11
Women 6:00pm Camosun (#4) vs. COTR (#7)
Men 7:45pm Camosun (#3) vs. COTR (#7)
Sat, Nov. 12
Women 1:00pm Camosun at COTR
Men 2:45pm Camosun at COTR