Spartans Beat UBC Okanagan In Three

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Mark Janzen

LANGLEY, British Columbia – The Trinity Western women’s volleyball team earned its third win in a row as they knocked off UBC Okanagan in short order Friday night, winning 3-0 (25-19, 25-18, 25-12) at the Langley Events Centre.

The Spartans proved too strong for the first-year Heat as they held UBC-O under 20 points in all three sets and were dominant from start to finish, bettering the visitors in every statistical category.

Trinity Western hit .215 as a team to go along with 10 service aces and 9.5 blocks. In comparison the Heat hit .048, while garnering six aces and 3.5 blocks.

Trinity Western was led by Kelci French, who had five kills, four aces and eight digs, Royal Richardson, who had nine kills and nine digs, and Alicia Perrin, who had eight kills and five blocks.

For the Heat, it was Myrte Schonn leading the way with seven kills, seven digs and three aces while Alex Basso had six kills and five digs.

With the win, Trinity Western improves to 5-2 on the season while the loss drops UBC-O to 2-5.

“I think our team served really well tonight,” said Spartans coach Ryan Hofer. “I think we put them into situations where they ran into a little bit of trouble. We keyed on certain hitters and we put a lot of pressure on their attackers, forcing them to make really great shots to score.

“Kelci French played really well for us tonight. She served really well. She attacked really well. She did some good blocking stuff. She just had an outstanding night. Chelsea [Hudson] set very well tonight and our outside hitters did a good job of blocking and making good plays on the ball.”

The Spartans were the better team early on in the first set as they took a 10-5 lead, forcing the Heat to take an early timeout. Coming out of the break though the Heat started to find their feet as they closed the game to within two points at 17-15 after a Chandler Proch ace.

After Trinity Western’s Hudson and Carly Hamilton were substituted in, the Spartans restored their four-point edge at 20-16 and from there, never let UBC-O any closer than three points, finishing the set with a Perrin kills.

In the second stanza, the Heat took the upper hand early on and staked themselves to a 9-6 lead after a kill from Jill Festival. However, after UBC-O’s quality start, the Spartans responded by going on a 10-2 run that gave Trinity Western a 17-11 lead.

While UBC-O got the game to within four points at 20-16, the Spartans game-changing, and rather deflating, mid-set run was too much for the Heat to overcome.

In the third set the pendulum of momentum swung even further to Trinity Western’s Casie Gano opened the set by serving the Spartans to a 6-0 lead.

The Spartans pushed that lead to 12-1 before UBC-O finally slowed a hot-handed Trinity Western squad.

The Heat earned three points in a row to make it 12-4 but that was as close as they could get. Trinity Western kept up its efficient fashion, finishing with a .429 hitting percentage in the set, and ultimately it was an Amy Leschied block ending the set 25-12.

The two teams will meet in a rematch Saturday at 5:00 p.m.

Games Notes – TWU’s Jodi Neufeld had a career-high 18 digs…the Spartans limited their attack errors to 14 while UBC-O had 20… TWU had 53 digs to UBC-O’s 42.

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