WVB: UBC holds off Cougar comeback to complete quarter-final sweep

WVB: UBC holds off Cougar comeback to complete quarter-final sweep

U of R Sports Information

REGINA – The University of Regina women's volleyball team and UBC Thunderbirds went the distance for the second-straight night at the CKHS, with UBC hanging on for a five-set victory and weekend sweep on Friday night.

After UBC won the first two sets handily, Regina bounced back in the third and fourth to force a deciding fifth set. The Cougars held a 5-1 lead before the Thunderbirds fought back to take an 8-7 advantage. UBC looked like they had the final set in hand with a 14-11 lead, but two kills from Ashlee Sandiford and a Thunderbird attack error evened the score at 14-14. UBC eventually thwarted the Cougar comeback once again, as consecutive kills from Kiera Van Ryk and Tessa Davis gave UBC the set and a berth in a Canada West semifinal next weekend.

"We served really well in the first two sets and that was probably the reason that those sets weren't as close," UBC head coach Doug Reimer said. "That balance in the serving and passing shifted in the third and fourth sets so full credit to Regina there. To fight back after two tough sets, they battled really well and we didn't execute at the level we needed to in those two sets."

Van Ryk led the T-Bird attack with 21 kills and 12 digs, while Jayde Robertson had nine kills and Victoria Behie and Courtney Hillier each had seven. Olivia Furlan had a match-high 46 assists to go along with 14 digs, and libero Samantha Patko had 15 digs.

UBC also had 13 service aces, led by five from Behie.

For the Cougars, Taylor Ungar had a match-high 24 digs, while Jessica Lerminiaux, Satomi Togawa, Diana Lumbala and Sandiford each added 12. Lerminiaux had a team-high 15 kills with Sandiford and Lumbala also reaching double-doubles with 10 apiece.

UBC hit .173 on the evening, with marks of .212 in the first set and .361 in the second. The Cougars reached a .165 mark for the match.

"I have to give our team a lot of credit as well," Reimer added. "We were down in the fifth and we had some players step up and make some strong contributions at key times.

"The margin between us and Regina isn't very big at all, so I feel very grateful that we get to keep going. Regina would have been a very good playoff team as well had they moved on."

UBC will visit the No. 2-ranked Calgary Dinos next weekend in a best-of-three semifinal series.