Kamloops, BC—The TRU WolfPack women’s volleyball team started strong but wound up falling to the UBCO Heat in exhibition Canada West women’s volleyball play Friday (Sept 23) 3-1. The scores were 20-25,25-18,25-17,25-19.
The TRU WolfPack women’s volleyball team met up with the University of British Columbia Okanagan—the defending CIS bronze medal winners in exhibition play on the Warner Rentals court at the Tournament Capital Centre. The exhibition match highlighted the end of the first day of the annual WolfPack senior girls’ volleyball tournament at the TCC.
(stats unofficial due to computer problem)
UBCO: Megan Festival (5th year, outside hitter, Calgary, AB) 10, Michelle Jakszuk (4th year, outside hitter, Gibsons, BC) 9, Siobhan Fitzpatrick (3rd year, outside hitter, Kelowna, BC) 7
TRU: Iullia Pakhomenko (5th year, outside hitter, Donetsk, Ukraine) 14, Rachel Windhorst (3rd year, outside hitter, Surrey, BC) 11.
Abbey Spratt (1st year, setter, Calgary, AB) 26
TRU head coach Chad Grimm:
On Game: “ The first set was good. We came out with a lot of energy. I thought we won the serve-receive game in the first set which is always important. We were pretty gritty in the first. They made a couple of pushes and we pushed back. Second set we had our moments. In the third, they dominated us from front to end. We had a good pushback in the fourth getting out to a pretty nice lead. They put one server on the line and made a huge run which changed the potential of us winning the set.”
On which players stood out: I thought Abby (Spratt, 1st year, setter, Calgary,AB) came out to start the match and did really well. I think Hali (Drezet, 1st year,libero, Prince George, BC) had a pretty strong match. I thought Kendra (Finch, 2nd year, outside hitter/libero, North Vancouver, BC) had some really good reception moments as well and passed well. We are just looking for one or two people to show the calmness and take the leadership responsibilities on the court.”
On fight for starting positions: “They (first year players) are definitely in the mix if they keep performing well. They have their chances to come to play. That is the message for everyone on the team: there are spots open everywhere. With the departure of four starters there are jobs up for grabs. That should be great for practice.
UBCO head coach Steve Manual:
On what he liked about his team: “ I liked to see how we battled down the stretch here. In a couple of sets we got down. We are still trying to find our identity. We are a fairly new group. It took us a while to play like a team. Sometimes it takes a little more than a few sets: sometimes it takes a whole season. What I liked to see is that as we got rolling we played more like I team. Sometimes the contact wasn’t what we wanted but they (the players) supported each other out there. If someone didn’t make a good play, someone made it up on the next play.”
On where his team is in its development: “We are on par. It will be a slower process for us this year. We have only played one match so far. Our exhibition schedule is heavier later on. We are going to take it nice and slow with this team. I like what I see so far. I don’t think we measure to see so far. I have TRU in my books as one of the teams that is going to ‘be there’. I am happy with how the girls played tonight.”
On personnel who played well: “We have some veterans. Megan (Festival) is a warrior. She played very, very well tonight and was a stabilizing force. I liked what I am seeing from our setter Emily Oxland (5th year, North Vancouver, BC). Again a veteran. She has a bunch of new weapons out there and she is trying to figure out how to use them. Sometimes, that isn’t easy. She is doing a nice job adapting. The serving run (8-0 in the fourth set) by Michelle (Jakszuk) was unbelievable.”
There was about 800 people in attendance for the match: most of them players from the WolfPack’s tournament
TRU will play in the West Coast tournament next month in Langley. They kick off their Canada West regular season at home on the Warner Rentals court at the Tournament Capital Centre as they face the University of Alberta Pandas on Friday, October 28th.. Game time will be 6 pm.