The T-Birds will also take on the winner of the TrinityWestern-Manitoba semifinal on Saturday in the conference gold medalgame. Both conference finalists will qualify for the CIStournament, as well as the third-place finisher.
Recently crowned MVP Barclay set the tone on Friday, and she setit early. She racked up 10 kills in just the first set on her wayto a 27-kill night in which she hit .447 with an ace and a soloblock.
Mariah Bruinsma also had a very effective night, assisting onseven of UBC’s nine blocks and adding two aces and threekills. And the efforts of libero Briana Liau Kent can’t beoverlooked either. She led all players by a mile with 23digs, and was a blur in the third and fourth sets, getting tougherand tougher to beat as the Heat turned things on late in hopes of acomeback.
The Heat came out looking like a different team in the third setafter the T-Birds breezed through the first two. Middle blockerKaty Klomps and outside hitter Brianna Beamish led the squad to awin in the third set, and they were knocking on the door in thefourth, trailing just 23-21 after having fallen behind by sixearlier on. But a couple sneaky kills from Schlagintweit andJuliana Kaufmanis ended their comeback hopes, forcing them to playfor their playoff lives on Saturday.
Beamish finished with 13 kills to lead the Heat. Klomps knockeddown six kills on just 11 attacks in the middle, and she had fourblock assists. The Heat struggled to get any rhythm goingoffensively, hitting in the negatives for the first two sets andfinishing with a .092 team hitting percentage.
Set one was all T-Birds, and to be more specific, it was allBarclay. She had 10 of UBC’s 15 kills in the set in just 14swings, propelling the T-Birds to a .340 hitting percentage whilethe Heat hit -.080.
In set two, the offence was a little more evenly distributed forUBC, but the defence was just as dominant. UBC took a quick 3-0lead to force a Heat timeout, and then went up 8-2 before cruisingto another easy win. They held the Heat to a negative hittingpercentage again, and they got four kills each from Barclay andSchlagintweit to take a 2-0 lead.
The third set started out the same, with UBC going up 3-0 toforce a UBCO timeout. This one seemed to work a lot better though,as the Heat quickly surged ahead 9-6 thanks in part to some niceserving from Klomps, including a pair of aces. After UBC made it9-7, the Heat went on a 5-0 lead on Michelle Jakszuk’s serveto make it a 14-7 lead, and the T-Birds were in too deep a hole torecover from.
The Thunderbirds will take on the winner of the TrinityWestern-Manitoba semifinal for the conference title on Saturday at7 p.m. The Heat play the loser of that match Saturday at 5 p.m. forthird place and the final CIS berth.
|Canada West semi-final 2