By: Kelly O'Donnell, Bisons Sports
WINNIPEG – Despite winning the second set 25-7, the Manitoba Bisons couldn't beat the Saskatchewan Huskies and dropped a 3-1 (25-20, 7-25, 25-20, 25-21) decision in women's volleyball at the Investors Group Athletic Centre on Friday, Dec. 1.
"We just didn't play with enough defensive intensity," said Bisons head coach Ken Bentley. "We had three or four balls that dropped between people in the first set, and the third set we were up 14-10."
In the final points of the fourth and final set, Huskies power Emily Koshinsky had three hard-driven kills, bringing Saskatchewan the win with a score of 25-21. Koshinsky came out of the game leading in kills (12) and digs (14) for her team.
Huskies middle Georgia Harry served eight straight in the first set, helping the team gain an early lead of 10-2. Saskatchewan setter Mackenzie Pek and middle Carissa Noble were a tough duo to block, gaining five kills with Pek's quick sets and Noble's hard-driven attacks. Right-side Taylor Annala finished the set 25-20 for the Huskies with a hard-driven hit deflected out off of the Bisons' block.
The Bisons held a big lead in the second set, winning 25-7. Bisons setter Brittany Habing pulled out all the stops, surprising the Huskies with a kill off of the second touch, a fake attack, and another kill off of the Huskies' over-bump.
The third set was a closer battle. The Huskies pulled ahead in the last five points of the set, finishing 25-20 after a big block by Harry and Pek.
Kearley Abbott was a force for the Bisons, leading with 12 kills and 16 digs in the match.
"If you were going to ask me one thing, I'd say yeah, our compete level wasn't good enough," said Bentley.
Manitoba will play the Huskies again tomorrow night at 5 p.m. CT, and after the holidays, the women's team will head to Vancouver to play the UBC Thunderbirds on Jan. 5 at 8 p.m CT while Saskatchewan host Regina on the same weekend after the holiday break. All matches can be seen live on CanadaWest.TV website.
Manitoba – Kearley Abbott 12
Huskies – Emily Koshinsky 12
Manitoba – Kearley Abbott 16
Huskies – Emily Koshinsky 14
Manitoba – Allison Alcock 5, Emily Erickson 5
Huskies – Georgia Hurry 7