Matt Packwood, Brandon University Athletics
BRANDON, Man. – After dropping a disappointing match to Winnipeg on Thursday the Brandon Bobcats battled back on home court for a 3-1 (25-17, 14-25, 25-8, 25-16) win Saturday.
The Bobcats hit efficiently in the three sets they won to get their fourth conference win of the season.
Brandon registered 20 kills in the first set including eight from fifth-year outside Nikala Majewski. It was all offence on both sides of the net as Brandon registered no blocks in the first but Winnipeg had one.
Winnipeg started the second set on a 6-0 run at which point Brandon coach Lee Carter called a timeout. The break helped slow things down as Brandon quickly got back in the set thanks to some long rallies and tight defence, but struggled hitting just .079 as a team.
Brandon started the third with momentum, running to a quick 7-2 lead before running away with a one-sided set score. The fourth was much the same as the Bobcats jumped to an 8-1 lead and didn't look back.
"Coming off the Thursday game it felt like there was a lot of emotion because we knew how important that was and we know as a team what we're capable of, so being able to go out there tonight and show everybody what we really can do as a team was really fantastic," says rookie middle Deserae Unger following her first start in a conference match.
That sentiment was echoed by third-year outside hitter Rayvn Wiebe who also started the match and finished with 10 kills.
"I feel like it would have been easy for us to roll over and say 'hey we're done for the season and that's it,' but we're a good team and we know it. It was just good to finally see that because it's been too long since we got that win," says Wiebe.
Majewski continued her torrid pace registering a match-high 20 kills to go with 11 digs, continuing her climb up the Canada West record books. The Winnipeg product moves to eighth all-time in Canada West history in career kills, surpassing Joanna Niemczewska of the Calgary Dinos.
Michelle Egger also registered a double-double with 10 kills and 11 digs while sophomore libero Caitlin Le had another solid night defensively, notching 18 digs.
Jamie Bain distributed the ball well finishing with 37 assists.
Winnipeg was led by Emma Parker who put up seven kills while Jessica Andjelic had 16 digs.
The win moves Brandon's record to 4-16 while Winnipeg sits at 4-14.
The Bobcats head back on the road next weekend for a weekend series against Thompson Rivers University. Winnipeg will play another home-and-home, this time with cross-town rivals the Manitoba Bisons.
Photo courtesy Milana Paddock