Larissa Vicente Ferreira; Dinos Communications
CALGARY – The University of Calgary Dinos remained undefeated on the Canada West season with an efficient three-set win (25-13, 25-15, 25-19) over the University of Manitoba Bisons on Friday at the Jack Simpson Gym.
Calgary's Hannah Tanasichuk led all players during the game with 15 kills, followed by her teammates Beth Vinnell and Kenzie Vaandering, putting down nine kills each. Manitoba's Laura Hill and Laura Findlay each added seven kills to pace the Bisons.
The first game back home, after two weeks away, was short and sweet for the Dinos. The opening set started off with the Dinos holding court on their home floor. Calgary was able to maintain a .357 hitting percentage in the first set while holding Manitoba to just -.030. Meanwhile, the Bisons had nine attack errors and the Dinos only two. After a quick first set, the Dinos picked up the win with a 25-13 score.
The beginning of the second set started with a different attitude from the Bisons, who were able to gain momentum by keeping it close, having a good rebound set. However, after Tanasichuk seemed to end every single rally with six kills throughout the second set, the Dinos started pulling away with a five-point difference against the Bisons and ended up with a 10-point lead, winning the second set 25-15.
The final set was the closest of the night, with Manitoba committing fewer errors – but it still was not enough as the Dinos' well-oiled machine took the third set with a 25-19 score.
"I think our team came out pretty strong and we came out and did our jobs tonight," said Calgary middle Beth Vinnell, who is leading Canada West hitting percentage. "It feels good to be back at home, it has been a while. It is nice to get back to our home and get back to our routines."
Manitoba's Cassie Bujan was the game's frontrunner with 13 digs during Friday's match in a losing cause. Calgary's Kate Pexman added seven kills and a team-leading five blocks along with 11 digs in a solid all-around night.
"I think they will definitely come out stronger tomorrow, we have to be prepared for that. The libero [Kennedy Snape] covered the whole court today and did an awesome job passing, so, we are trying to hit targets and keeping the ball away from her to put them in more trouble," added Vinnell.
"We played a really solid match from the very first point to the very last point. We didn't really take any breaks along the way, we were just very efficient and placed really well tonight", stated coach Natalie Gurnsey. "We need to be able to repeat that kind of performance, that kind of efficiency two nights in a row."
The Dinos and the Bisons will battle again on Saturday at the Jack Simpson Gym, with first serve at 4 p.m. MT.
Photo by David Moll