The Bison womens’ soccer team wrapped up their season this past weekend on the road, traveling to Edmonton to play the University of Alberta on Oct. 29 and then to Saskatoon to play the University of Saskatchewan on Oct. 30.
In their first game against the playoff-bound Alberta, who ranked third in the conference, the Bisons were blown out 6-0. The next day, the Bisons came up short against the Saskatchewan Huskies, losing their last game of the season by a score of 2-1. Alison Kastner scored the lone Bison goal, which will stand as the last goal of the 2011 season. The Bisons finished the season with a 2-9-3 record, settling for eighth place in the Canada West standings.
In their first game against their in-province rivals, the No. 8 Brandon Bobcats, the No. 3 Manitoba Bisons came out strong, winning the first set 25-19. The Bobcats came out strong in the second set, scoring seven straight points. Despite a valiant effort by the Bisons, Brandon took the second set 22-25. The Bisons would take control from there, winning the next two sets 25-18 and 25-16, respectively, as they earned the victory 3-1 (25-19, 22-25, 25-18, 25-16).
A big reason for the Bisons’ success was their dominant play along the net; Manitoba had 19 blocks to Brandon’s three. Fourth-year Bison right side Dane Pischeke lead all players with 16 kills, and Derek Nieroda led the Bisons with 12 digs.
The Bisons picked up where they left off in their next match as they won the first two sets consecutively. The Bobcats attempted a comeback in the third as they forced a fourth set with a 25-27 performance, but the Bisons put it away in the fourth, 25-19, securing their second victory of the season 3-1 (25-21, 25-11, 25-27,25-19).
The Bison womens’ volleyball team also started their season against Brandon this past weekend and were just as dominant as their male counterparts. In their first game, the Bisons came out flat in the first set but came storming back, winning the next three sets for a 3-1 (16-25, 25-23, 25-22, 31-29) victory. The third and fourth sets were extremely close, but the Bison veteran players came through in the clutch.
The Bisons continued to show why they were pre-ranked No. 4 in the nation, sweeping the Bobcats in straight sets 3-0 (25-21, 25-22, 25-16). Kristi Hunter led the Bisons with 11 kills, including the match point in the third set. Tricia Mayba and Crystal Mulder were right behind her with 10 kills each.
The two Bison volleyball teams take their 2-0 records to the U of Calgary this weekend for a pair of matches against 1-1 Dino volleyball teams.