WVB: UBC secures weekend sweep with four-set win over Regina

WVB: UBC secures weekend sweep with four-set win over Regina

University of Regina Sports Information

REGINA – The UBC Thunderbirds took a four-set victory over the Regina Cougars in Canada West women's volleyball on Friday night at the Centre for Kinesiology, Health & Sport on the U of R campus.

UBC (5-5) enjoyed another fine outing by third-year setter Olivia Furlan, who finished with 47 assists and 13 digs while also putting down six kills herself. Kiera Van Ryk (23 kills) and Tessa Davis (14 kills, .346 hitting percentage) led the team's hitters, while libero Samantha Patko led all players with 22 digs.

The Cougars, who fall to 4-6 on the season, had a 16-kill effort by second-year outside hitter Jessica Lerminiaux. Lerminiaux, who had just two errors on her 41 attacks, finished the match with a .341 hitting percentage.

The two teams split the opening sets, with the Cougars coming out of the gates with a 28-26 victory in the first before UBC took a 25-19 win in the second. Regina hit well in that second set with a .357 hitting percentage compared to .273 for UBC, but the Thunderbirds put down five of their 13 service aces in that set alone to help swing the result in favour of the visitors.

Both of the final two sets featured strong late finishes by UBC. In the third, back-to-back kills by Ashlee Sandiford put the Cougars up 21-15 and they looked poised to take a 2-1 lead in the match, but after a UBC timeout it was all Thunderbirds - but more specifically, all Van Ryk. The second-year outside hitter got a kill on the next play after the timeout, then put down kills on four of the final eight plays of the set to lift UBC to a come-from-behind 28-26 win.

The fourth set saw UBC collect six of the final eight points, turning what had been a one-point Cougar lead into a 25-22 match-clinching win for UBC. Van Ryk and Furlan had kills on consecutive plays to seal the second road victory in as many nights for the Thunderbirds.

Diana Lumbala also had a strong game for the Cougars, finishing with 10 kills, eight digs, and a match-leading six blocks. Satomi Togawa added 40 assists and 10 digs, while libero Taylor Ungar had a team-leading 15 digs. The Cougars, who played their final home match of the 2018 calendar year, have next weekend off before they'll finish up the first half of the conference schedule on the road at Mount Royal on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1.

UBC returns home to battle another prairie foe next weekend in Vancouver as the Thunderbirds will host Saskatchewan on Friday and Saturday.