No. 7 Wesmen recover from slow start to defeat No. 10 Bisons
by Mitchell Clinton, U of Manitoba Sports Info Assistant
Archive photo courtesy U of Winnipeg Athletics: Winnipeg's Andrew Town had 14 kills in Wednesday's win and moved into the league's Top 10, averaging 3.19 kills per set this season
WINNIPEG - In a battle of two ranked teams in the CIS, the No. 7 University of Winnipeg Wesmen were able to beat the No. 10 Manitoba Bisons men's volleyball team in four sets (13-25, 25-21, 25-18, 26-24) at the Investors Group Athletic Centre on Wednesday.
The Wesmen (9-5) were led by three players who recorded double-digit kills, with Andrew Town leading with 14, Matt Schreimer picking up 12, and Justin Duff having 11. Setter Dan Lother was also busy, adding 41 assists to his team's winning cause.
On the Bisons (7-9) side of the net, Chris Voth led his team with 14 kills, tying Town for the highest total in the game. Dane Pischke also chipped in with 11 kills of his own. But after a 40 per cent team attack percentage in the first set, the Bisons weren't able to muster anything over 18 per cent in the rest of the sets.
The fourth and deciding set was the closest since the first set, with the Bisons coming out strong, taking a one-point lead into the first technical timeout. But after that, the Wesmen made their move, and by the second technical timeout, they held a four-point, 16-12 lead. The Wesmen then had a few chances to close out the match, but the Bisons were able to come back to tie the set at 24. But the set wouldn't be extended for long, as the Wesmen took the next two points taking the set 26-24, and the game 3-1.
Both teams were trying to pick up the third set to have a shot at winning the match in the fourth, but it was the Wesmen getting out front early, and hanging on to that lead throughout the set. The Wesmen took advantage of an under 10 per cent attack percentage from the Bisons in the set to pick up a 25-18 win in the third, giving them the chance to win the match in the fourth.
The Wesmen were able to respond in the second set, after the Bisons took the first set in such a commanding fashion. The Wesmen had four-point leads over the Bisons both times that Bisons' head coach Garth Pischke called timeout. The Wesmen lead was as much as seven when they were serving for the set, but the Bisons had a mini come back, getting to within three, before eventually falling 25-21.
The opening set seemed like it was going to be all Wesmen as they jumped out to a 4-1 lead, but the Bisons went on a 7-2 tear to bring the score to 8-6 at the first technical timeout. From there the Bisons held and extended their lead, on the heels of a huge edge in team attack percentage. The Bisons were an even 40 per cent in the first set, compared to the Wesmen who were under 10. The Bisons would eventually take the first set 25-13.
Up next the Bisons have a week off before hosting Saskatchewan on February 12-13. Meanwhile the Wesmen welcome Regina on February 5-6.