Winnipeg, MB: It was a ‘David versus Goliath’ situation for the Thompson Rivers University WolfPack men’s volleyball team this weekend. The youthful ‘Pack had to go into the University of Manitoba and play the top ranked team in the nation: the Bisons in Canada West play.
The two teams wound up the weekend series on Saturday afternoon (Feb 4), with the Bisons winning 3-0.
The scores were 25-15, 25-15, 25-16 as the Bisons improved to 19-1 while TRU fell to 2-16. The WolfPack were led offensively for the second straight match by rookie Anton Napolitano (1st year, outside hitter, Victoria, Australia).
Manitoba’s top offensive threat was Devren Dear with10 kills in 17 chances.
Anton Napolitano: 4 kills in 16 swings, 1 service ace, 4 digs, 1 block assist
Sam Taylor Parks: 3 kills in 9 attempts, 3 block assists
Randy Grundmann: 2 kills in 12 opportunities, 2 digs, 2 block assists
Charlie Bringloe: 2 kills in 5 chances
Jakob Hamilton: 15 assists, 6 digs, 1 block assist
Devren Dear: 10 kills in 17 opportunities, 2 service aces, 5 digs
Scott Vercaigne: 7 kills in 12 chances, 3 service aces, 1 dig
Luke Herr: 3 kills in 5 swings, 25 assists, 3 service aces, 4 digs.
MANITOBA 19-1 TRU 2-16
TRU Interim Head Coach Mike Hawkins:
“The story of the afternoon again was our unforced errors. We know we have the physical abilities and skills necessary to score points and win matches, but we need to do a better job in mentally processing the match. It’s difficult to expect that from young and inexperienced athletes, but to get to where we want to, we need to develop in that area of the game.”
“Keel Haldane and Cole Hanson, both guys seeing their first Canada West action, provided a great spark for us off the bench. Keel came in right away and got a big block on their opposite, while Hanson got a big kill out of the middle and put in tough serves. Those two are great examples of the rewards of working hard day in and day out.”
Next weekend (Feb 10-11) the WolfPack will kick off a three match home stand on the Warner Rentals Court at the Tournament Capital Centre as they entertain the University of Winnipeg Wesmen. On Saturday (Feb 11), the WolfPack will recognize their lone fifth year player: Daniel Eikeland Rod (Outside hitter, Oz, Norway). They will then play their final home match of the regular season on Thursday, February 16th when the UBCO Heat come to town.
Manitoba will visit MacEwan University Griffins in Edmonton, AB.