File photos for UBC Okanagan Heat athletics

SASKATOON – The UBC Okanagan Heat men fell in straight sets, closing out the weekend with a pair of losses against the University of Saskatchewan Huskies in Saskatoon 3-0 (25-20, 29-27, 25-19) Saturday night on Ron & Jane Graham Centre Court at the PAC.

After dropping the first set, the Heat looked to be in a position to win the second, but were unable to take the extra-points victory. Putting their game into another gear in the third, the Huskies closed out the win on home court with a 25-19 win for the three-set victory.

First Set: (25-20)

The Heat had a good first set, with 10 kills on a .304 hitting percentage, but were bested by the Huskies’ 16 on .400.

The Heat kept it close early on, and it was tied up at 7-7, but Saskatchewan put together four straight and pulled ahead 11-7. They didn’t let up from then on, were ahead 16-11 at the break, and carried the momentum for the remainder. A pair of kills from Colin Fraser closed it out.

Second Set: (29-27)

The Heat finished the second with an outstanding 20 kills on .395 hitting, just ahead of Saskatchewan’s 19 on .372. The difference in attacking errors was just two, with the Heat on the losing end in a tense extra-points set.

UBCO had the edge nearly all the way through the second. Up 16-14 at the break, and earning set point at 24-22 thanks to a Joshua Harvey kill, they weren’t able to hang on and cement the win. Attacking errors late and the presence of their big swingers at the net put Saskatchewan over the top, as they took the win six points into extras.

Third Set: (25-19)

In the third the Heat finished ahead in kills, 14-9, but the Huskies’ consistency was their strength as they hit .350 and held the Heat to .229

The third saw the Huskies play their most dominant ball. Stringing five straight points together early, they took a 16-10 lead into the break. Only allowing the Heat to put together consecutive points once from then on, Saskatchewan were able to close out the win on a three-point run, to which Dylan Mortensen provided the final exclamation point to seal the Saturday night win.

Key Performers:

UBC Okanagan:

Lars Bornemann led all Heat hitters with 13 kills, while Max Heppell and Devon Cote were behind him with nine apiece. Setting them up was Morgan Nichols, who finished with 37 assists.

Cote added a team-high nine digs.

Dylan Mortensen had a match-high 14 kills, while Colin Fraser also finished in double digits, with 12. The setting duties for the Huskies were evenly split between Troy Wiebe and CJ Gavlas, who finished with 19 and 18 assists respectively.

By the Numbers:
Kills were even on Saturday night, with each team finishing with 44, and hitting percentage had the Huskies just ahead, with .376 against the Heat’s .312. Assists had the Heat with a slight edge, 44-42, while the Huskies finished one better in digs, 32-31. Total blocks finished up 3-2 for Saskatchewan.

Next Up:

The UBC Okanagan Heat (5-13) will be at home next weekend, hosting the Winnipeg Wesmen (11-7) in Kelowna. Game times are 8PM PST Friday, and 7 p.m. PST Saturday.

The Saskatchewan Huskies (9-11) will be in Edmonton on those same days, taking on the University of Alberta Golden Bears (15-3).

~ Grayson B. Leahy, Heat Sports Information