Feb 27, 2015
Photo credit Martin Bazyl
TORONTO (CIS) – The UBC Thunderbirds opened Day 2 of the 2015 CIS women’s volleyball championship, presented by Canuck Stuff, with a 3-0 (25-12, 25-21, 33-31) consolation semifinal victory over the Laval Rouge et Or in front of 1,600 screaming fans on School Day at U of T’s Goldring Centre for High Performance Sport.
With the win, the Thunderbirds advance to Sunday’s consolation final, where they will meet the winner of Dalhousie and Ottawa in a battle for fifth place.
Both teams entered the match as strangers to the consolation side of the bracket, as UBC’s 10-year quarter-final win streak came to an end last night versus the RSEQ champion Montreal Carabins. Laval has also only appeared in one other consolation semifinal (2013) in their last eight appearances over the past decade.
Third-year left site hitter Danielle Brisebois of Bolton, Ont., led all players with 16 points, tallying 14 kills, one ace and one block. Fifth-year UBC veteran Lisa Barclay (Brandon, Man.) added 11 kills, 10 digs and two aces, while setter Alessandra Gentile had 32 assists and seven digs.
Sophomore middle Emily Cicon of Courtenay, B.C., wowed the crowd with seven serving aces, six coming early in the first set, en route to player of the match honours.
“Right from the start we had the right mix of energy,” said Doug Reimer, now in his 18th season as UBC bench boss. “What we didn’t do yesterday we were able to do today. Emily set a tone. Give her a lot of credit. She’s a hardworking, dedicated, humble teammate so to have her succeed is great in her first year starting in a national championship.”
CIS all-Canadian Alyssa Fields-Bouchard of Chibougamau, Que., topped Laval with 10 kills, with Sophie Dallaire adding seven kills and Valerie Lemay recording a game-high 15 digs. Emillie Ducharme tallied 24 assists and nine digs in the loss.
“Those games are never easy to play,” said Laval head coach Olivier Caron. “We struggled to focus, especially early on. We competed much better later on in the match, but it was too little, too late. It’s the end of our season. It’s disappointing, especially for our graduating players, but the girls can be proud of their season.”
UBC got out to a quick 9-2 lead thanks to the six aces from Cicon. A Barclay kill gave the T-Birds a 16-5 advantage at the technical timeout. The Canada West bronze medalists kept rolling and a final kill from Abbey Keeping sealed the first 25-12.
Laval rallied to make the second a much closer affair. Even at 10-10, UBC went on a 6-1 run to gain a 16-11 lead at the break. The Rouge et Or came back to bring it within two late in the frame (23-21), but the Thunderbirds took a 2-0 match lead, winning the second 25-21.
Both teams traded points to start the third and the Thunderbirds held a narrow 16-13 advantage at the technical timeout. Laval kept coming back and took the set to the bitter end, but a final kill from Brisebois secured the UBC straight-set victory, 33-31.
Kills: Danielle Brisebois (14), Lisa Barclay (11)
Points: Danielle Brisebois (16), Lisa Barclay (13)
Blocks: Abbey Keeping (4)
Digs: Juliana Kaufmanis (14)
Service aces: Emily Cicon (7)
Player of the match: Emily Cicon
Kills: Fields-Bouchard (10), Sophie Dallaire (7)
Points: Fields-Bouchard (10), Sophie Dallaire (8.5)
Blocks: Alice Cloutier (1), Sophie Dallaire (1), Valerie Lemay (1), Alex Beraud (1)
Digs: Valerie Lemay (15)
Service aces: Emily Ducharme (2)
Player of the match: Alice Cloutier
CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE & RESULTS
Thursday, February 26
13:00 Quarter-final #1: No. 4 Montreal 3, No. 5 UBC 0 (25-22, 25-18, 25-16)
15:00 Quarter-final #2: No. 1 Trinity Western 3, No. 8 Laval 2 (24-26, 24-26, 25-15, 25-16, 15-8)
18:00 Quarter-final #3: No. 3 Toronto 3, No. 6 Dalhousie 0 (25-10, 25-19, 25-6)
20:00 Quarter-final #4: No. 2 Alberta 3, No. 7 Ottawa 0 (25-23, 25-21, 25-18)
Friday, February 27
11:30 Consolation #1: UBC 3, Laval 0 (25-12, 25-21, 33-31)
13:30 Consolation #2: Dalhousie vs. Ottawa (www.CIS-SIC.tv)