January 9, 2013, Saskatoon, SK (ISN) – The University of Saskatchewan Huskie volleyball teams will open the second half of the Canada West season at home in a weekend series at the PAC.
The Huskies host the Thompson Rivers University WolfPack Friday and Saturday.
Match time for the women is set for 6:15 p.m., while the men will play at 8 p.m. All four matches will be webcast at www.canadawest.tv.
The Huskies will look to continue strong play seen at a non-conference tournament in Edmonton last weekend.
Saskatchewan finished the New Years Classic 1-4, defeating Canada West opponent the Mount Royal Cougars and taking a set from the No. 2 ranked Alberta Pandas. The Huskies finished a tough road-filled first half 1-11.
A young squad, the Huskies were led by fourth-year outside hitter Candace Hueser in the successful matches at last weekend’s tournament. Hueser, who battled injury in the first half, finished 11 matches with 47 kills, 31 digs and nine blocks. Second-year middle blocker Kayla Tycholiz leads the Huskies’ in offence with 87 kills, 10 service aces and 24 blocks. Carmen Dubnick and Anne Hanbidge have also chipped in with 46 and 44 kills respectively.
Thompson Rivers enters the weekend 0-12 after the first half.
Katarina Osadchuk and Carly Nelson have provided the bulk of the offence for the WolfPack in 2012-13. Osadchuk leads the team with 61 kills starting all 12 matches. She adds 10 service aces, 19 digs and 32 blocks. Nelson has recorded 45 kills, 11 aces and 49 digs.
Since Thompson Rivers joined the Canada West in 2005-06, the Huskies are 4-4 in conference play against the WolfPack.
Another battle of top 10 teams in the Canada West, the Huskies and WolfPack will both look to continue to stay in the playoff race.
The No. 8 ranked Huskies (7-5) enter the weekend on a six match winning streak including two exhibition wins over Japan’s Budo in December. The Huskies are tied for fifth in the conference standings.
Thompson Rivers sits on the Huskies heels in eighth at 5-7. The No. 9 WolfPack have won just two of their last eight matches.
Fourth-year outside hitter Bryan Fraser is having a career season tallying 145 kills and 89 digs. Fellow outside hitter Paul Thomson is also having a strong offensive season with 115 kills, 67 digs and 14 blocks. Also joining in for the Huskies attack has been middle blocker Braden McLean with 65 kills and 44 blocks. Setter Chris Gilbert has accumulated 457 assists, while libero and captain Jeff Grant has 104 digs.
The bulk of Thompson Rivers’ attack comes from Brad Gunter with 129 kills, 22 blocks and 88 digs. Mohamed Rehim has added another 64 successful attacks, followed by Jesse Bazergui with 59. As a team the WolfPack are strong defensively with 506 digs.
Since 2005-06, the Huskies are 3-7 against Thompson Rivers in Canada West action.