KAMLOOPS, BC: Volleyball fans at the Tournament Capital Centre went home happy on Saturday night (Jan 20). After seeing their Thompson Rivers University WolfPack men’s volleyball team fall behind 2-0, the home team rebounded and beat the visiting University of Saskatchewan Huskies 3-2.
The scores on the Warner Rentals court were 16-25,20-25,25-20, 25-17, 15=6.
Both teams are now 7=11 as the WolfPack swept the Huskies this weekend to win their third and fourth straight matches.
TRU was led again in this contest by Tim Dobbert with 19 kills. Dylan Mortenson and Colin Fraser had 12 kills apiece for Saskatchewan.
After being swept in straight sets on Friday (Jan19), Saskatchewan was looking for a little pay back and they got it early.
In the first set, they got four kills from Dylan Mortenson(1st year, outside, Swift Current, SK) and outdug the WolfPack 10-4 to win 25-16.
Saskatchewan won the second set as Mortenson added six more kills. He was aided by Colin Fraser ( 4th year, outside hitter, Saskatoon, SK) who had four kills to give him eight on the night at that point.
The WolfPack had a big lead in the third set but the Huskies came back to go on a couple of runs before bowing 25-20. Tim Dobbert (4th year, outside hitter, Aichelberg, Germany) leading the kills parade in that set with three.
The fourth set saw TRU go on a 5-0 run early but Saskatchewan scored four straight to knot things at 7. It was the WolfPack who led at the tech time out by four (16-12) as Sam Taylor Parks (3rd year, middle, Kelowna, BC) ended a long rally by driving the ball down past a fallen Saskatchewan player. The WolfPack dug out a 25-17 victory to force a fifth and deciding set.
In that fifth set, Josh Mullaney (3rd year, outside hitter, Calgary, AB) and Dobbert led the way. Mullaney came up with four key points including three in a row to launch TRU to an 11-5 lead. Dobbert added two kills to wind up with 19 on the night.
TRU head coach Pat Hennelly:
On the match: “ We needed that. We needed to be down, come back and be in a super intense playoff atmosphere. This was the first great volleyball game in two years for this program. Proud of the guys, they stuck with it. Things weren’t that positive last year or the first half of this year. They all worked hard, they are all good student/athletes. I am happy for the guys.”Volleyball,CIS,
Volleyball gods being in their favor winning 50/50 balls: “You gotta be good to be lucky I always say. When you aren’t thinking about things that is when the ball drops in your favor. Some of those digs and some of the things that happened there when a hot team gets some bounces. Its great to be at home.”
On Josh Mullaney’s improvement: “Josh has shown what he can do. What he can do is be a world class player. He is out there. He stepped up. Landon struggled early (Currie, 1st year, libero, Vernon, BC) and I said to the guys “Landon was rock solid last night. Someone has to step up.” Josh took it upon himself. He came up with some big blocks, big serves and big attacks. That is the guy we recruited to be one of the top players in the country.”