This weekend saw the University of Manitoba Bisons volleyball teams pitted against their local rivals, the Winnipeg Wesmen. The pair of games on Thursday – part of the Duckworth Challenge – saw the men emerge victorious while the women were defeated. Saturday was the same stor in terms if results despite the women putting up a much better fight.
On Thursday night at the Duckworth Centre, the Bisons men’s volleyball team were able to win 3-0 (25-23, 25-23, 25-17). Devren Dear once again led Manitoba in kills, with 14. Dear is now second in Canada with 4.51 kills per set. He also had five digs, tied for team best on the night with Josh Goossen.
In a tight matchup, the herd only outscored the Wesmen by a score of 56-44, with the third set being the most decisive
The Bison women’s volleyball team lost three straight sets against the Wesmen. It was a rough night for the herd, as they were completely dominated in every facet of the game.
Tori Studler had six kills on the evening, along with six digs. Cassie Bujan led the visitors with seven digs of her own. The Bisons were outscored 62-35 on Thursday night and struggled to gain any kind of momentum.
In a rematch of Thursday’s contest, the men found themselves down two sets, but were able to mount an incredible comeback to in 3-2 (26-28, 23-25, 25-15, 25-19, 15-13).
It was a thrilling matchup with many long rallies and some heart pounding drama. The game ended in the fifth and final set when Luke Herr came up with a massive block. The crowd erupted in elation shortly thereafter.
Adam DeJonckheere finished ahead of usual suspect Devren Dear with a team best 21 kills. Dear was not far behind however, as he finished with 20.
Bison head coach Garth Pischke talked post game about the come back.
“Kevin Falconer and Caleb Hickock turned that game around for us,” Pischke said. “The defence certainly helped, we did a better job of blocking.”
Pischke also talked about the importance of sweeping the very good Wesmen team, who have been nipping at their heels all season.
“This is big for us, we’ve lost a couple the last two weeks so this was nice to get,” he said.“We played really well on Thursday, but our best came in those last three sets.”
The Bisons now have a 16-4 record and will play host to a 5-14 Brandon Bobcats team next weekend at Investors Group Athletic Centre.
The women were looking to rebound after a disappointing 3-0 loss on Thursday. In a tight first set, the Bisons were able to squeak out a 27-25 victory. Tori Studler registered seven kills in the first set alone. She would finish with a team best 11 on the night.
The Wesmen managed to draw level in the second set, with a 25-18 win. The Bisons responded with a 25-23 third set win, however the Wesmen took two straight to end the game in a 3-2 finish (25-27, 25-18, 23-25, 25-18, 15-8).
In a much better effort from Thursday’s contest, Cassie Bujan came up with an impressive 20 digs.
The Bisons fall to a 2-18 record with the loss, while the Wesmen improve to 8-12. Next weekend the Bison women will also host the Brandon Bobcats in a two game series.