SPARTANS GET SPLIT OVER COUGARS
CALGARY – The Trinity Western Spartans men’s volleyball team responded to Saturday’s five set loss, with a five set win over the Mount Royal Cougars Sunday afternoon at MRU’s Kenyon Court in Calgary.
The No. 2 Spartans 18-25, 25-13, 22-25, 25-23, and 15-5 victory snapped the Cougars seven game winning streak and improved to 7-3, while the loss dropped MRU to 8-4.
Ryan Sclater with 24 kills, eight digs and six blocks and Nick Del Bianco with 14 kills, eight digs and two aces led the Spartans, while Lachie Pollock with 14 kills and Jordan Parkin with 12 kills and nine digs led the Cougars.
TWU setter Adam Schriemer led the Spartan attack with 36 set assists, while MRU’s Samuel Brisbane with 40 set assists led the Cougars.
The Spartans blocking, 18 team blocks, and attack efficiency, 31.3 percent, would be the difference in the final outcome of the match as the Cougars finished with four team blocks and 19.7 percent attack efficiency.
The Cougars continued their hot play against the Spartans by winning the first set by a score of 25-18. Tyler Schmidt was a force on both ends, picking up five kills and six digs. Schmidt overpowered the Spartans’ Schreimer at the net to give the Cougars a 24-18 lead and made sure his teammates took notice as he flexed and tapped his bicep walking back to the team huddle. Lachie Pollock had three kills for Mount Royal as he was placed in the starting lineup after a successful afternoon yesterday.
Trinity Western weren’t going to let the Cougars take four straight sets from them and really dominated in the second. After starting out with a 7-4 lead, the closest the Cougars would get was a five-point deficit. The Spartans won 25-12 behind strong performances from Daniel Grant and Ryan Sclater.
The Spartans would lead only at the beginning of the third set, and after a timeout by the Cougars, they would not relinquish the lead. Things would stay close down to the wire, but after Scott Plocktis sent his serve into the net to give put the Cougars one point away from a set win, Mike Wickstrom was able to end it at 25-22 with a booming kill.
The match’s fourth set was neck-and-neck throughout but the Spartans were able to prevail and force a fifth and decisive set. Wickstrom led Mount Royal with four kills while Sclater had five for TWU. Del Bianco’s kill gave the Spartans a 25-23 win.
The Spartans showed why they are nationally ranked by stomping the Cougars in the last set, winning 15-5 and not letting the Cougars get close at all. Sclater’s strong play continued and he was the driving force in the win.
TWU will now head home to face the Brandon Bobcats on Friday and Saturday November 21 and 22. Match times at the LEC are set for 8 p.m. and 7 p.m.