The University of Manitoba volleyball teams hosted the MacEwan University Griffins over the weekend. The Bison men split their series against the Griffins, while the women swept to even their record.
On Friday, the Bisons won three closely fought sets. Manitoba led 16-13 at the technical timeout in the first set, and the Griffins closed the gap to 22-21, but the Bisons came away 25-21 winners. The second set was much tighter. The Griffins pulled closer at the end, scoring a pair of points with the Bisons at 24 but, after a timeout, Adam DeJonckheere smacked home the 25th point. The third set saw the Bisons cruise to a comfortable 25-17 win.
On Saturday, the Bisons dropped a tough five setter. The first set was plagued with service errors on both sides of the ball, but it was the Griffins who managed to hold onto a lead all the way through to win 25-20. DeJonckheere had six kills in the first he finished with 27 on the night.
The second set went ridiculously long, but Manitoba managed to come away 32-30 victors after a MacEwan net violation. MacEwan stormed out of the third set, taking an early lead and not looking back, winning 25-15. Manitoba knotted the game back up by winning the fourth set 25-20.
A prolonged fifth set went in favour of the Griffins, giving them their first win of the season.
“We made so many errors it was unbelievable,” said head coach Garth Pischke. “In the first set we made 19 errors, the other team scored 25 points, so if you’re going to give the game away like that it just gave them confidence.”
The Bison men are now 2-6 on the year, and sit in eighth place in the Canada West conference.
The women, like the men on Friday, dropped the Griffins in straight sets. Manitoba won a closely fought first set 25-23. In the second set had Manitoba come away 26-24 winners after scoring three straight points.
The Bisons won the third set handily 25-16. Cassie Bujan finished with a team best 17 digs, and Kearley Abbott smacked home 16 kills.
On Saturday, the Bisons needed five sets to finish the sweep of the Griffins. Manitoba led 16-12 at the technical timeout in the first set and held on to win 25-16. The second set was won by the Griffins, then Manitoba took the third set, and after nearly coming back to win the fourth, this game was destined for a fifth set.
The fifth set was a heart pounding affair, with multiple lead changes, but the Bisons managed to win 15-12.
“We held firm and stayed in the fight,” said head coach Ken Bentley. “That was a really big achievement for our team.”
The Bisons are now 4-4 and sit in ninth place in the Canada West.
The Bison volleyball teams head to Kamloops on Nov. 24-25 for a two-game set against the Thompson Rivers University Wolfpack,