January 30, 2013, Langley, BC (ISN) – The No. 2 Trinity Western women’s volleyball team (16-2) will look to keep its perfect 9-0 home record intact this weekend as it hosts Calgary (9-9) in what will be the Spartans last regular season home matches of the season.
Game times are Friday at 6 p.m. and Saturday at 5 p.m.
Both matches can be seen on www.canadawest.tv.
Last year, the Spartans played the Dinos on the road in the regular season and lost both matches in four sets. In the playoffs, the Spartans earned a measure of redemption, beating Calgary on back-to-back nights, 3-1 and 3-0, in their Canada West quarter-final best-of-three match-up.
TRINITY WESTERN SPARTANS (16-2)
CIS ranking: No. 2
Canada West position: 2nd
Last Weekend: Mount Royal 3-0 W, 3-1 W
Streak: 7 wins
2011-12 Canada West record: 13-7 (4th)
2012 CW playoffs: 3-1 (3rd)
2012 CIS tournament: 2-1 (5th)
Since going on a four-match post-Christmas trip to Quebec in which the Spartans went 2-2 – falling to now No. 7 Montreal twice but beating now No. 8 Laval and McGill – Trinity Western’s women’s volleyball team has gone a perfect six for six in Canada West league play. And the Spartans have done so in decided fashion as they still have yet to play a fifth set in conference play all season.
In what could be a quarter-final playoff preview, the Spartans take on a Calgary team that is fighting for its playoff lives.
One of the key match-ups to watch will be the Spartans defence against the Dinos offence. Through 62 sets for TWU, the Spartans have held the opposition to a conference-best .074 hitting percentage. However, on the other side of the net is a Calgary side, which, through 71 sets, has a hitting percentage of .228 (2ndd in Canada West). Whoever wins this battle will carry the day.
Not surprisingly the defensively-staunch Spartans lead the conference in blocks, averaging 2.80 per set, and are second in digs, with 13.71 per set.
Offensively, TWU has a hitting percentage of .223 (4th in Canada West) and an average of 12.26 kills per set (3rd in CW). As a team, the Spartans are averaging 2.40 aces per set (3rd in CW) and 11.26 assists per set (3rd in CW).
Middle Alicia Perrin (Creston, B.C.) has been a dominant force all season for TWU as she is averaging a Canada West best 1.34 blocks per set and a .343 hitting percentage (3rd in CW). Not far behind Perrin in blocking is Nicole Bazin (Winnipeg), who is averaging 1.18 blocks per set (4th in CW). Setter Kelci French (Okotoks, Alta.), who last weekend set the Spartans single-season record for aces with 37, leads the conference with 0.63 aces per set. French is on pace to break the Canada West single-season record for aces per set, which is currently co-held by former Spartan Lies Reimer (Verhoeff) and Alberta’s Jenny Cartmell, at 0.56. Libero Kristen Moncks (Standard, Alta.) is third in the conference with 3.21 digs per set.
Including last year’s playoff wins, the Spartans have won five matches in a row at home against the Dinos, dating back to a five-set loss on Oct. 31, 2008. The Spartans have never lost against Calgary at the LEC.
CALGARY DINOS (9-9)
CIS ranking: NR
Canada West position: 6th (tied)
Last Weekend: Thompson Rivers 3-0 W, 3-1 W
Streak: 2 wins
2011-12 Canada West record: 11-9 (5th)
2012 CW playoffs: 0-2
2012 CIS tournament: N/A
With four matches to go, the Calgary Dinos find themselves right in the thick of the playoff race. Tied for sixth going into the weekend, but just one match clear of eighth place Brandon, the Dinos know every outing the rest of the way will be critical.
This weekend, they find themselves charged with the unfortunate task of trying to knock off Trinity Western at the Langley Events Centre; a place the Spartans have gone 33-1 over their last 34 matches including the regular season and playoffs.
While Calgary has yet to win at the LEC in four tries, it certainly can look to last year’s regular season result, when the Dinos beat TWU on back-to-back nights in Calgary, for confidence.
With a veteran laden team that includes well-established players like Lindsey Doland, Sarah Moncks, Andrea Price and Brooke Halvorsen along with emerging star Courtney Dawson, the Dinos are far from an easy out.
With their impressive .228 hitting percentage – second only to No. 1 ranked UBC – and their 2.49 blocks per set, which trails only TWU, the Dinos come to Langley a side ready to swing with the Spartans. As a team, the Dinos are also averaging 12.08 kills per set (4th in Canada West), 11.11 assists per set (4th in CW), 12.48 digs per set (8th in CW), 1.62 aces per set (9th in CW) and have held their opposition to a .184 hitting percentage (8th in CW).
Dawson leads Calgary with a hitting percentage of .347 (2nd in CW) while also dominating on the block, averaging 1.24 blocks per set (3rd in CW). Offensively, the Dinos have four different players who are all averaging above 2.50 kills per set. Doland leads the way with 2.92 per set but not far behind is Moncks at 2.76 per set, Dawson at 2.69 per set and Price at 2.56 per set.
Setter Jordhynn Guy, who took over the starting gig after Sarah Lacny graduated last year, is averaging 9.16 assists per set. Defensively, Moncks, like her sister Kristen at TWU, leads her team in digs, with 3.06 per set.