HALIFAX, N.S. (from UNB Varsity Reds) — In Saturday night Atlantic University Sport volleyball action, the UNB Varsity Reds scored a 3-1 win over the Dalhousie Tigers.
The Varsity Reds won with scores of 23-25, 25-17, 31-29 and 25-23.
Both teams traded points early while neither side was gaining much of an edge, with heavy hitting and strong defence coming from both sides of the net.
Libero Mathieu Lavoie (Winnipeg, MB) was huge for the Tigers with five digs resulting in kills for Matthew Donovan (London, ON). On the other side, Alex Egers (Fredericton, NB) also played stellar defence, helping to set up Pascal McCarthy (Fredericton, NB) and Connor McConnell (Hanwell, NB) for three kills each.
The Tigers held a slight edge and took advantage of a Varsity Reds service error, taking the first set to 25-23.
The length of the Varsity Reds gave the Tigers trouble in the second set, with four blocks as a team before the technical break, as well as forcing the Tigers into attacking errors. As a result, the Varsity Reds jumped ahead to a 16-7 lead.
Ryan Colpitts (Fredericton, NB) picked up four kills in the set as his team extended their lead on route to a 25-17 set win.
In the third, Dal started quickly, jumping out to a 7-1 lead on kills from Donovan, as well as big blocks from Matthew Woods (Halifax, NS).
The Tigers continued their aggressive attack with kills by Graham Schmuland (Calgary, AB) putting them up 15-6, but the Varsity Reds put together a huge run of six straight points before the technical break on three kills from McConnell.
The Varsity Reds continued to have a big presence at the net, pulling to within one point of the Tigers on three straight blocks. The Varsity Reds found themselves on set point with the score at 24-21 but were unable to close it out. The Tigers then had three opportunities to end it, but they couldn’t put the points together, and UNB took the third set 31-29 on two perfectly placed serves from Colpitts.
The Tigers built a 16-13 lead in the fourth set, but the Varsity Reds made up the difference before pulling away and winning 25-23.
Donovan led the way for the Tigers with a match-high 20 kills, to go along with 11 digs. For the Varsity Reds, McConnell collected 13 kills and six blocks to earn himself the Player of the Match title.
The two teams head to the final AUS/RESQ Interlock Tournament, next Friday, in Sherbrooke. The Tigers will face the host team in their first match, while the Varsity Reds take on Laval.