A showdown between rivals, the University of Calgary Dinos and University of Alberta Golden Bears, always raises the stakes of a match, and men's volleyball contests Jan. 21-22 were no exception. The Dinos men headed north to face the top-ranked Golden Bears on Friday, hoping to salvage some points in the last few weeks of regular season play.
The opening set went to the home team 25-17, and with a strong attack, they also took the second, 25-20. Despite Brian Nelis' 15 kill performance and Tyler Fraser's five digs, the Bears clinched the victory by a 25-19 margin in the deciding set. Being out-blocked, out-hit and generally out-played, the only stat the Dinos managed to finish ahead in was service errors, with 14 to Alberta's 12.
Saturday's match was unfortunately not even close. The Dinos again dropped three straight--losing by much larger scores.
The first set saw the Bears cruise to a convincing 25-15 win. The subsequent 25-14 and 25-10 sets demonstrated exactly why our northern neighbours are the top team in the league. It took just one hour and ten minutes to conclude the abysmal affair, leaving the Calgary squad wondering where it all fell apart.
Again, late-season bloomer Nelis provided the sole highlight for the Dinos, soaring to a 21 kill weekend, with six added to his total on Saturday.
The men return home this weekend for the final homestand of regular season action. Hopefully they will vent some frustration against the unsuspecting University of Regina Cougars Feb. 4-5 at 6 p.m. in the Jack Simpson Gymnasium.