October 27, 2013, Saskatchewan (ISN) – The visiting No. 1 ranked University of Alberta Golden Bears completed a sweep to open the Canada West men’s volleyball season, with a 3-0 (25-18, 25-22, 25-23) win over the No. 7 ranked University of Saskatchewan Huskies Sunday at the PAC in Saskatoon.
Ryan Nickifor led the Golden Bears in the victory tallying 12 kills and 10 digs for his team. Kevin Proudfoot added another nine. Brandon Yao recorded 11 digs.
Jordan Nowakowski led Saskatchewan with 13 kills, while Bryan Fraser and Braden McLean each tallied seven. Fraser also added nine digs in the match.
With the sweep, Alberta joins three other Canada West teams to open the season with two wins. A night earlier, the Golden Bears won 3-2 (2-3 23-25, 25-18, 14-25, 25-23, 20-18).
Tied at 15, Alberta began to pull away in the first set after capitalizing on three Huskie attack errors and one service ace. The Huskies got within two at 19-17, but Alberta finished the set 25-18 with kills by Matt McCreary and Nickifor.
Alberta seemed in control of the second set until Saskatchewan tied the game at 13 after capitalizing on Alberta errors including an out of rotation call. McLean gave the Huskies a 14-13 lead with a kill that the Golden Bears couldn’t dig up. The Huskies were the first to the technical timeout at 16, but Alberta scored the next two points on blocks. The Huskies tied again at 21 and Alberta scored the next two before McLean scored with an attack that slid between the net and Golden Bears blockers. A Fraser service error set up set point for Alberta and a Golden Bears block sealed the 25-22 win.
The teams matched each other point-for-point with neither gaining more than a two point lead until John Goranson’s attack couldn’t be dug up along the right line for a 16-13 Golden Bears lead. Saskatchewan tied the match at 20 and took a 22-21 lead forcing an Alberta timeout. Fraser blocks put the Huskies up 23-21, but a Huskie error and a Goranson block pulled Alberta back to a 23 tie. Goranson added another kill and block with Jay Olmstead to take a 25-23 win. The lead changed six times in the set.
The Huskies remain at home to host the Trinity Western University Spartans next weekend, while Alberta returns home to host the Brandon University Bobcats.