February 9, 2018
Toronto 3 Guelph 2
Third-year right side hitter Alina Dormann notched a season-high 23 kills and 26 points in leading the University of Toronto Varsity Blues women's volleyball team to a 3-2 (18-25, 25-20, 25-12, 20-25, 15-8) win over the Guelph Gryphons on Friday night (Feb. 9).
With the win, the Blues improve to 10-4 and sit in third place with a game in hand over the second-place Queen's Gaels (11-4) in the OUA East division.
Dormann led all players with the 26 points, off of 23 kills and three blocks, while also adding six digs on the night.
Fourth-year left side hitter Anna Feore had 14 points off of 10 kills, three blocks and one ace, while also notching a game-high 15 digs.
Rookie Jenna Woock chipped in with nine points off of five kills, two blocks and two aces, while Brianna Patrick had seven points, all coming from kills, and 13 digs.
Rookie setter Rayn Perry tallied a season-high 47 assists, with libero Sophia Currier adding 10 digs in the win.
Libby Donevan led the Gryphons with 23 points off of 15 kills and eight blocks in the loss.
Brock 3 York 2
The Brock University women's volleyball team defeated the York Lions by the score of 3-2 (28-26, 15-25, 25-14, 20-25, 15-11) Friday night on the road.
With the victory, Brock improves to 6-9 on the season and remain in the hunt for an OUA West playoff berth.
The Brock offense was led by senior Renee Helmer who recorded 13 kills and five digs. Tori Carroll contributed with nine kills and four blocks while Amy Cureton, Grace Edwards and Jennifer Todd chipped in with eight, seven and seven kills respectively. Setter Emily Armstrong finished with 35 assists, nine digs and six kills while libero Megan Smith added 12 digs in the victory.
Leading the Lions was Sarah Williams who recorded 12 kills and 15 digs in the loss.
For the match, Brock registered 50 kills with 25 errors on 140 attempts for a .179 hitting percentage. The Lions finished with 48 kills with 30 errors on 153 attempts for a .118 hitting efficiency.
February 10, 2018
McMaster 3 Nipissing 0
Launching into their final road trip of the regular season, the Marauders women's volleyball team got back to their winning ways Saturday.
McMaster bounced back from their upset loss in their last appearance to sweep the Nipissing Lakers 25-17, 26-24, 25-11 and improve to 14-2 atop the OUA West division.
Achieving a blistering 35 per cent hitting average as a group, the Marauders were led offensively by middle Hailey Kranics (Fort Erie, ON), who knocked down 10 kills on 15 attempts with just one error (.600), adding two and a half blocks for 12.5 points.
McMaster's top scorer in the win was outside hitter Aleks Arsovic (Burlington, ON), who caused havoc from the service line en route to six aces, while adding seven kills and a block assist for a match high 13.5 points.
In sharp contrast to the Marauders, the Lakers struggled mightily to create any offence Saturday, hitting a -.013 average on the day with 19 errors versus 18 kills as a group. The hosts earned just 26 points, while the Marauders created 54 of their own.
Toronto 3 Waterloo 1
The University of Toronto Varsity Blues women's volleyball team defeated the Waterloo Warriors 3-1 (25-19, 25-19, 23-25, 25-19) to extend their winning streak to three-games on Saturday, February 10 in Waterloo.
With the win, the Blues improve to 12-4 and advance to second place in the OUA East division. The team has captured victories in five of their last six matches.
The Blues dominated the Warriors, only being tested by their opponent in the third set, but ultimately prevailed.
Veteran Alina Dormann put up a game-high 16 kills for a total of 19 points, while also adding 13 digs.
Rookie Jenna Woock chipped in 13 points from nine kills, one ace, and three blocks, and sophomore Brianna Patrick notched 12.5 points with nine kills, two aces, and 1.5 blocks.
Veteran Anna Feore registered a team-high 25 digs and recorded 11 points from seven kills, three aces, and one block.
Rookie Rayn Perry hit the 40 assist mark for the second time this season with a game-high 42.
Warriors Samantha Warner led her team with 14.5 points from 10 kills, three aces, and 1.5 blocks.
Trent 0 Guelph 3
GUELPH – It was a proper send off for a couple veterans likely playing the final home match of their careers. Senior Night was a chance to honour fourth-year Guelph Gryphon volleyball players Libby Donevan and Jessica Gormley – and the duo, with teammates in tow, came through on the court. The Gryphons defeated the Trent Excalibur 3-0 (25-14, 25-23, 25-19) at the GGAC Saturday night.
Donevan and Gormley, both middle blockers, have been a presence for a very young Gryphon team that has shown incredible growth the past six weeks. Guelph's improved play was evident on Senior Night, as the team jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead in sets before finishing well in the third.
The Gryphons have made it a tradition to win on Senior Night in recent years and the team was desperate to keep that streak alive.
"It was nice for Libby and Jess to go out that way," said head coach Paul Funk. "They both played exceptionally well tonight." The seniors are honoured in a pre-match ceremony
Donevan (14), Michaela Hellinga (13) and Gormley (11) accounted for 38 of the team's 48 kills in the match. Second-year setter Alex Curran had 37 assists and 11 digs.
The Gryphons (7-10) were sharp in the first set, racking up 11 kills and making just a single error. It was a tougher road in the second as the winless Excalibur battled but at 18-17, Curran made an intelligent play, surprising the visitors by swinging the ball over the net into a space for a huge point. Four straight aces put pressure on the Gryphons but they finished off the set with a vicious Hellinga kill to the back baseline.
The seniors were instrumental in the third set. Donevan put one away for a 14-8 lead and Gormley added a kill to make it 17-12. After a Gormley serve, Donevan came up with a huge block on a Trent attack to put the hosts up 21-17. She would add her second kill in a span of three points to get Guelph within one of a win. And Hellinga ended it moments later.
"It was a must win for us," said Funk, pleased that teh Gryphons remain in the hunt for the OUA playoffs. "We have to get results."
Funk said that he doesn't always immediately feel the emotion of Senior Night as he's concerned about the ceremony going well and then focuses on the match. But he admitted that his thoughts are with his departing seniors for a long time after they leave the program. It will be no different with Donevan and Gormley, who were presented with flowers and framed pictures in a pre-match ceremony.
Funk said that he was proud of how Donevan developed as a player over the years, reaching the potential she showed as a young athlete. The Gryphons celebrate
"Libby's gotten better every year that she's been here and was rewarded last year being a Second Team OUA All-star," he said. "She's one of the team jokers. If you don't know her, it's not the impression you would get from her but she's good at keeping things light and the team loose."
Funk noted that the foot fracture that kept the St. Catharines, ON native out to start the season was unfortunate and added that Donevan's play since returning in early January, which also coincided with the team's turnaround, has been All-star worthy.
"She's been key for us the second half, an offensive force and her blocking has enabled our defence to stabilize," the coach said.
Funk has been impressed with Gormley's journey as a Gryphon.
"Right from her very first year, Jess has been a hard worker," he said of the Bio-medical Science major from Georgetown, ON, who hopes to be a doctor. "She's improved physically and her work ethic is one of the best, if not the best, on the team. She's our captain this year and has been a leader within the program.
"Jess is a high-character kid. She also does a lot outside the sport."
"Losing those two kids is going to be hard," Funk added of the seniors. "Those are some pretty big shoes to fill."
February 11, 2018
Trent 1 Waterloo 3
The Warriors took out the Trent Excalibur in four sets on Sunday afternoon in their final regular season game but it didn't come as easy as they had hoped.
Trent were scrappy in the first two sets frustrating the Warriors with strong defensive play but the black and gold managed to find their game winning the final two sets with relative easy by scores of 25-18 and 25-11.
Waterloo's errors really tell the story as they decreased each set starting at 10 in the opening set and down to just one in a dominating win in the fourth.
It was Senior Day for Kayla Wierts (Drayton/) who took part in her final home game in the black and gold. Wierts has been a true example of what it means to be a Warriors, being an Academic All-Canadian each of her five years. In the match, Wierts put away four kills and had one block.
Claire Mackenzie (Vancouver/) had a game high 10 kills while Sarina Trasolini (Vancouver/) continued her strong play on the left side position with eight kills.
At the net Serena Otshudi (Stoney Creek/) was outstanding with eight blocks while Katrine Eistrat (Toronto/)and Mackenzie each had five. Brooklyn Gallant (Cambridge/) also had a strong game with timely kills and 10 digs in the win.
Trent's offence came primarily from Geena Saunders and Camile Garzon, each with nine kills.
Waterloo improved to 6-10 with the win and are just two points out of the fourth and final playoff spot in the OUA west with three games to play.
Brock 2 Nipissing 3
A win would be the perfect way to cap off the weekend for the Nipissing Lakers women's volleyball team, up against a scrappy Brock Badgers team.
And after a difficult five set match, it was mission accomplished. Despite initially trailing the Badgers in the first set, Brock reaching the technical timeout up by just two points, the Lakers managed to tie the set up at 18-18.
From there, the Lakers sprinted towards the end, winning the set 25-23.
Brock came out strong in the second set, stepping up their game and grabbing the lead at the technical timeout, 16-10.
Nipissing wasn't going to give away their earned first set and refused to throw in the towel on the second.
Switching gears and showing off their power, Nipissing caught up, tying the match 24-24.
Despite their comeback, Brock managed to hold Nipissing off and take the second set, 27-25.
Nipissing led at the technical timeout in the third set and had a seven point cushion. That advantage led them to a 25-21 victory as they moved ahead 2-1 in the match.
Nipissing was a win away from taking home the match and with the score all tied up 15-15, Brock managed to gain the point to bring them to the technical timeout.
Brock continued to push and earned a fourth set victory, taking the set 25-19 forcing a fifth set.
Nipissing led 8-2 early in the fifth set and never looked back. A late push by Brock was answered by Nipissing and eventually, they sealed the match, winning 15-10 in the end.
A thrilling 3-2 win now gives the Lakers an 8-8 record, good for fourth place in the East Division.
Olivia Robinson had a huge match, scoring 19.5 points, Shayla Kessler added 16, Annabelle Harvey had 14.5 and Cassie Dobson and Erika Lapierre each had 9 in the victory.
The Lakers will hit the road next weekend, taking on York and Trent Friday and Saturday night.
RMC 0 Queen’s 3
KINGSTON, Ont. (February 11, 2018) – The Queen's Gaels (12-4) defeated the RMC Paladins (2-14) in three straight sets on home court this afternoon at the ARC. The scores of each set were 25-14, 26-24 and 25-15.
The Gaels got off to a rough start in the first set of the game, making four consecutive errors and allowing the RMC Paladins to take a small lead early in the set. After a time out, the Tricolour reorganized and began to run their precise offence. Kills from Julia Wiercigroch(Mississauga, Ont.), Natalie Crews (North Vancouver, B.C.) and Makayla Keith (Calgary) allowed Queen's to catch and surpass the RMC lead. Two serving aces during a 9-point serving streak from Shannon Neville (Cambridge, Ont.) helped the Gaels maintain their gap over the Paladins. Queen's took the first set with a score of 25-14 on a serving error made by RMC.
In the second set, Neville made several hard blocks, keeping the Gaels defence alive. The Paladins played an equally strong defence early in the second set, preventing the Tricolour from making any kills. Queen's began to find their groove, with Isabelle Korchinski (Anmore, B.C.) finishing a kill down the right line and Wiercigroch making a tip kill down the right line. The RMC Paladins began to find the gaps in the Queen's defence and battle their way back from a deficit to tie the set at 20-20. The Gaels and the Paladins struggled point-for-point until the Gaels broke the tie with a kill by Danielle Corrigan (North Vancouver, B.C.) and a kill to central back court by Wiercigroch. The final score of the second set was 26-24 for Queen's.
A kill from Neville to the back left corner started the Gaels off on a great play. Another kill to the same position from Wiercigroch extended the Queen's lead. Blocks by Corrigan kept the Paladins from taking the lead. Corrigan continued to show her strengths with a kill to the back court left corner and a tip over the RMC block to extend the Queen's lead. Neville made a cross court hit in the third set and immediately after, Wiercigroch made a strong tip over the Paladins block for a kill. The Gaels took the third set with a score of 25-15 and the match in three sets off an error made by the Paladins.
Western 3 Windsor 1
WINDSOR, Ont. – The Mustangs came back after dropping the first set to upend the Windsor Lancers, taking a four set victory (17-25, 25-31, 25-21, 25-19) at the St. Denis Athletic Centre on Sunday afternoon.
With the win, Western continues to hold down second place in the OUA West. The Mustangs have built up an impressive 12-4 record, which will allow them to remain seeded second in the West regardless of the outcome of their next three games.
Windsor, however, is currently tied for third place with the Guelph Gryphons. Both teams hold 7-10 records, but the Brock Badgers are only one win behind and could end up taking the final playoff spot.
Kelsey Veltman led the Mustangs with 20.5 total points, topping both sides of the scoresheet with 15 kills, five aces, and an assisted block. This marks the third match in a row that Veltman has recorded five aces. The only other athlete on either team to match Veltman's prowess at the service line was fellow middle Danielle Grasman, who also had five aces.
Kristina Curcin was close behind Veltman with 17.5 total points, also recording 15 kills alongside two solo blocks and an assisted block.
Lexi Pollard, who was the second highest scoring athlete of the match behind Veltman, led Windsor. Her 16 kills, ace, and three assisted blocks was good for 18.5 points, and was followed on the scoresheet by rookie Paige Phills who totaled 15.5 points, from 13 kills, two aces, and an assisted block.
The first set was characterized by short rallies that rarely saw the ball cross the net twice after the serve. Aja Gyimah and Pollard established themselves as the primary offensive threats on the floor, with both leading their respective teams in kills.
Western and Windsor traded points fairly consistently for the first half of the set, until the Lancers broke the deadlock after tying it up at 12-12.
Windsor went on a six-point run to carry the team through the technical and establish a dominating lead that the Mustangs were unable to come back from.
In addition to the performance of Pollard in the frontcourt, the Lancers relied on strong serving to trip up the Mustangs. Hard flat serves proved to be a weak point for the purple and white as both Pollard and Jessica Arnds recorded aces.
For their part, the Mustangs had an uncharacteristically error-filled set. The team hitting percentage was 0.069, which was less than a third of the Lancers'.
Windsor rushed through the final points taking the first set 25-17.
The Mustangs switched up their lineup for the second set, moving Veltman to the left side and putting in Curcin as the second middle.
Curcin, a transfer from the University at Buffalo Bulls, made a difference within seconds after stepping on the floor. She generated six points for the Mustangs throughout the set while recording only one attack error, and also formed a commanding block with Veltman.
Serving continued to be a point of strength for Windsor, but the Mustangs were also able to hold their own. Grasman had two aces, while Veltman had one, and both forced the Lancers to scramble and return a free ball on more than one occasion.
The biggest change, however, came from the Mustangs attack. Set one saw the team send several balls well beyond the confines of the court, but the team was more disciplined in the second set.
Coming out of the technical timeout, the Mustangs held a slim lead but Windsor soon closed the gap to tie the set at 19-19.
The Lancers came back from what was earlier a five-point deficit by adjusting their defensive coverage to account for Veltman playing on the left. Windsor was careful to close off the cross-court shot with their blockers and planted a player in the backcourt as insurance.
Gyimah would bring an end to the set with a pair of kills, giving the Mustangs a narrow 25-23 victory.
Set three began much like the previous two, with Western and Windsor trading points and the score slowly progressing.
Both teams received more technical violations than in the previous sets combined, with net violations being the most common offense.
Despite having issues at the net, Western was phenomenal at the service line. Veltman racked up three consecutive aces while Grasman earned her third of the game.
Blocking continued to play a large role for both teams, although the bulk were continued thanks to careful coverage. Emily McCloskey in particular had a strong set, and was able to get hands on attacks from Western's best, while Phills was also making an impact.
It would be serving that ultimately won the Mustangs the set, with Taylor Beedie recording her eighth ace of the season to bring the score to 25-21.
Serving continued to take centre stage in the fourth set, with Grasman opening scoring with Western's tenth ace of the match. McCloskey responded with strong serving of her own – serving six straight and earning one ace.
After the first few points the two teams settled into rally play as serve receive improved for both teams.
Gyimah and Curcin were both successful at the net, and continually forced the Lancers into technical errors. Windsor struggled to keep their passes off the net, and as a result setter Brooke Davis became somewhat of a lightning rod for technical calls.
The score was tied at 17-17, but the Mustangs would go on a lengthy run to end the set at 25-19.
Curcin and Gyimah continued to helm the offensive effort, with the pair recording several kills. Beedie also played a large role in closing out the set, with a pair of kills herself.
As a whole, the fourth set was the most offensively sound for the Mustangs. With only five errors and 18 kills, the final set of the match final saw Western running the effective and fast-paced offensive that has become characteristic of the Mustangs in recent years. Western wrapped things up with a 25-19 win to take the match in four sets.
McMaster 3 York 0
Grounded in strong defence and a clean offensive approach, the Marauders came away from North York with their second sweep in as many days Sunday.
McMaster improved to 15-2 on the season with a 25-18, 25-22, 25-16 victory over the York Lions in their final road contest of the OUA regular season, maintaining their two-match lead atop the OUA West division.
Veteran left side Aleks Arsovic (Burlington, ON) led the Marauders with 10 kills in the win, adding a pair of blocks for a team high 12 points.
Continuing her emergence as an offensive threat since the holiday break, middle Hailey Kranics(Fort Erie, ON) hit .714 in killing six of seven attempts Sunday versus just a single error, and added three and a half blocks for 9.5 points.
Their blocking was a central feature for McMaster, as the visitors totalled 12 blocks as a group, and held York to a team hitting average of just .092 with 27 errors.
By comparison, the Marauders committed just eight hitting errors in the win, with an average of .274 as a team.