By: Matt Packwood, Brandon Bobcats Sports Information
BRANDON - The Alberta Pandas started 2017 right where they left off last year, picking up a straight sets 3-0 (25-11, 25-18, 25-15) win over the host Bobcats Friday night.
The Pandas rattled off 10 straight wins in the first half of the season to earn the #1 national ranking, and they lived up to that by picking up a quick win at the Healthy Living Centre.
Alberta was in complete control of the first set before being pushed by the Bobcats in the second set. Brandon managed to tie the second frame at 13-13, but the Pandas proved to be too much, starting the third set on a 6-1 run and not looking back en route to the straight sets victory.
Alberta had nine total team blocks, with Shauny Hogg, Karley Janssen and Vanessa Jarman all recording four block assists. The Bobcats managed three total team blocks.
Brandon hit in the negatives as a team, recording a -.011 attack efficiency.
Meg Cassault paced the Pandas with 12 kills, good for a .267 hitting percentage. Fourth-year libero Eryn Orysiuk put up 15 digs for Alberta while Kacey Otto contributed 12. Mariah Walsh had 30 assists and was perfect on all four of her attacks, putting up four kills.
Nikala Majewski had six kills for Brandon, while Mary Thomson and Gillian Leech had nine and eight digs respectively.
The win keeps the Pandas' record perfect at 11-0, while the Bobcats slip to 2-9 in conference play.
The two teams will meet again Saturday night at Brandon University's Healthy Living Centre. First serve is scheduled for 5 pm.