WINNIPEG, MB – The UBC Okanagan Heat men’s volleyball team were bested 3-1 on Friday night by the University of Winnipeg Wesmen in the Dr. David F. Anderson Gymnasium. Set scores were 25-12, 24-26, 25-14, and 25-16. With the loss, the Heat record is now 4-9, while the Wesmen improve to 5-8.
Friday night in Winnipeg saw the Wesmen snap a seven-match losing streak, with much credit going to Brendan Thielmann, Taylor Howe, Garrett Jones, and Casey Schouten. Thielmann and Howe each put away 10 kills for the home side, while Jones earned eight. Schouten put away six kills and six service aces in his first match of the season after being out for the first half with an injury. Setter Mikael Clegg also had 36 assists, and Ethan Duncan finished with five blocks.
For the Heat, Lars Bornemann led the attack with a match-high 14 kills. Kyle Hinchey finished with 10 kills, and Alex Swiatlowski had a team-high four blocks.
The first set saw the Wesmen play some of their best volleyball of the season, hitting .667 and committing no attacking errors while they rolled to a 25-12 victory.
The Wesmen were ahead 16-13 at the second set’s technical time-out, with the Heat seemingly finding their stride after the first. Coming out of the time-out, the Heat attack was led by Bornemann, who had three kills in the last nine Heat points and led them to a 25-24 lead. Setter Ethan Freund earned a kill on the final play, closing out the set for the extra-points UBCO win to tie the match at 1-1.
Winnipeg’s attack was on point again in the third set, much as it had been in the first, as they hit .611 and only made two attacking errors. Up 16-10 at the break, they carried the play still after the time-out and pulled ahead 22-14 thanks to three consecutive attacking errors by the Heat. More strong offence closed out the set, 25-14 for the home side.
The fourth set saw the Wesmen once again up 16-10 at the technical time-out. The Heat couldn’t find the game they’d had in the second set, and were once again simply outplayed in the final frame. Winnipeg took it 25-16 to win the match 3-1.
The Heat and Wesmen will play again on Saturday, with first serve schedule for 5 p.m. local time and 3 p.m. Pacific Time.
~ Grayson Leahy, UBC Okanagan