No 2 Spartans sweep Cougars

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November 23, 2013, LANGLEY, British Columbia (ISN) – The Trinity Western University Spartans defeated the University of Regina Cougars 3-0 in Canada West men’s volleyball action Saturday night at the Langley Events Centre in Langley, B.C. The 25-21, 25-9, 25-20 win moves the No. 2 Spartans to 9-1, while the loss keeps the Cougars winless at 0-10.

“It was a smooth night for us. Any time you win 3-0 you have to be happy. It’s hard to beat teams 3-0, so to get two of those to finish our home schedule this weekend is good,” commented TWU head coach Ben Josephson. “Our serving was poor in the first set, but in the second we did find a rhythm and our blocking was spectacular. While the third set was just a regular volleyball game with both teams making plays.”

Fourth year outside Nick Del Bianco (Langley, B.C.) with 16 kills and second year outside Ryan Sclater (Port Coquitlam, B.C.) with seven kills, seven digs and four blocks led the Spartans, while third year right side Andrew Nelson (Regina) with nine kills led the Cougars. TWU second year setter Scott Plocktis (Kelowna, B.C.) led the Spartans attack with 23 assists, while his counterpart with Regina Caleb Eschbach (fifth year, Dryden, Ont.) led the Cougars with 19 assists.

The Spartans had the better of the Cougars across the score sheet. Most notably TWU had a .333 (37-11-78) to -.014 (19-20-74) advantage in hitting, a 10 to four advantage in blocking and a 30 to 24 advantage in digs.

TWU also had an eight to four edge in service aces, but the Spartans did commit 15 errors to the Cougars eight. “We didn’t serve well against Calgary last week and we made that phase an emphasis in practice this week, so to have 15 errors with seven in the first set is disappointing,” added Josephson.

The last and only time that TWU has lost to Regina was 11 years ago to the day, when the Spartans fell 3-2 in Regina on Sat. Nov. 23, 2002. TWU is 29-1 against Regina. The lone loss came in Ben Josephson’s fifth year as the All-Canadian setter for TWU. “That loss cost us a play-off spot. I still remember it to this day,” said Josephson.

The Spartans will now head to Winnipeg for the final two matches of the first semester. Trinity Western will be at the University of Manitoba on Friday, November 29 and Saturday, November 30. The Cougars will head home to host the UBC Thunderbirds next weekend in Regina.

Match Notes: TWU rookie middle Levi Wolthuis (Carbondale, Alta.) saw his first Canada West action as a Spartan and recorded a block assist late in the third set…tonight’s match was broadcasted live on canadawest.tv…

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