Blues mount huge rally to edge Cascades in fifth set

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And like Friday’s game, the Cascades raced out to a big lead in the final frame.

Nicole Blandford
– Darren McDonald photo

But this time, the Blues had an answer. After falling behind 7-1 in the fifth, they clawed their way back to tie it up 12-12, then scored three of the last four points to clinch the win and salvage a weekend split at UFV’s Envision Athletic Centre.

The victory (25-21, 17-25, 25-22, 21-25, 15-13) boosted the Blues’ record to 4-2 in PacWest play, while the Cascades – the No. 6-ranked team in the nation – fell to 6-2.

“Whenever we play them, they seem to be long matches, tough matches,” Cascades head coach Dennis Bokenfohr said, reflecting on back-to-back five-set thrillers vs. Cap. “Their left sides just keep swinging high, keeping the ball in play. They force us to put the ball away. If we can do that, we usually have pretty good success. Tonight, it was a couple good serves by them late in sets, and that was the difference between winning and losing.”

Capilano took the first set on Saturday, and UFV evened things up in a second set that featured wild momentum swings. The Cascades went up 7-1 only to watch the Blues tie it up 7-7. It went back and forth until the midpoint of the set, when UFV got some separation and finished off a 25-17 win.

Cap took the third set for the second straight evening, forcing the Cascades to win the fourth to stay alive, which they did.

UFV looked to be in complete control in the fifth, but the Blues authored an epic comeback.

“We just got down on ourselves a bit and we couldn’t figure it out – lost communication,” Cascades libero Amy Davidson analyzed. “We had great defence, we just couldn’t finish in the hitting.”

The Cascades were missing two starters in left side Michelle Zygmunt (fractured finger) and setter Reena Randhawa (illness), but still put together a strong effort against a quality opponent.

Kierra Noot led the offence with 13 kills, while Kelly Robertson and Chantal Bruce notched 11 and 10 kills, respectively. Emily Carroll posted five blocks, and Davidson came up with 22 digs.

“For the most part we battled pretty good – Cap just pulled it out at the end there,” Bokenfohr summarized.

The Cascades volleyball teams are back in action at home next weekend, hosting the Douglas Royals on Friday and Saturday (women 6 p.m., men 8 p.m. both nights).

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