Matt Johnson, Huskie Athletics
SASKATOON – The University of Regina Cougars finished off the weekend with a commanding 3-0 (25-20, 25-19, 25-18) win over the Saskatchewan Huskies to give them the sweep over their provincial rivals on Jan. 12 inside the PAC.
Jessica Lerminiaux paced Regina with ten kills on the night, while Ashlee Sandiford and Brooklyn Reynolds chipped in eight and seven kills respectively. Sandiford also led the Cougars with nine digs.
Regina was the more efficient team on the night, as they finished with a .242 hitting percentage. The Cougars recorded ten service aces, six of which came from Sandiford.
Emily Koshinsky carried the way offensively for Saskatchewan, as the third-year Kinesiology student finished with 13 kills. Taylor Annala recorded seven kills of her own to go along with a team-high 11 digs. Alexandra Frank led the home side with 19 assists and recorded all three of the team's service aces.
The Huskies struggled offensively as they tallied a .145 hitting percentage and 21 attack errors as opposed to the Cougars 11.
The Cougars picked up their second consecutive win and moved to 8-8 on the season. Meanwhile, the Huskies fell to 6-10 as they enter the stretch run towards the playoffs.
Regina came out ready to play in the first set, as the hopped out to an early 11-5 lead. However, Saskatchewan battled back to take a 15-14 lead, on the back of an 11-4 run.
The Cougars would close it out from there however and took the set 20-15. Regina was more efficient in the opening set, as they finished with a .103 hitting percentage, compared to Saskatchewan's clip of .036. Sandiford, Lerminiaux, and Reynolds each recorded three kills in the frame.
A back-and-forth second set saw the teams exchanging leads throughout the frame. However, Haley Wagar's kill sealed the set for the Cougars to make the score 25-19, as the fourth year gave her team a commanding 2-0 lead. Reynolds rallied off another three kills in the set, which paced the visitor's attack. Koshinsky led the way for the Huskies as she recorded four kills in the frame.
In the third set, Regina got out to a commanding 13-4 lead. However, Saskatchewan provided their best effort to trim the deficit, as the cut the lead to 23-17. However, in the end, the home side was unable to dig themselves out of their early hole, and the Cougars finished off the final set with a 25-18 victory.
Saskatchewan will stay in Saskatoon next weekend, as they extend their homestand and play host to the Manitoba Bisons. Meanwhile, Regina will welcome the Brandon Bobcats to the Queen City for a two-game series.