The regular season got underway for the Dinos men's volleyball team as they traveled west to face the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds Oct. 28-29.
Friday night's contest was a close one, with the Thunderbirds coming out on top 3-1. The Dinos dropped the first set 25-18. They rallied in the second and third, dropping the former 25-23 and winning the latter 23-25, but were edged out in the fourth frame 27-25.
The error-filled deciding set was perhaps the best team effort of the match. Calgary battled back several times to tie up the score, but after middle hitter Oleg Podporin was ejected for arguing a call, UBC was able to steal the victory. Eric von Engelbrechten led the Dinos with 19 kills and seven digs in the losing cause.
Saturday's contest was unfortunately not as close. The Dinos were victims of a 3-0 sweep (25-23, 25-20, 25-16). Von Engelbrechten, again, played a strong offensive game, tallying 18 kills. The Dinos were out-blocked by a staggering 10-3 margin.
"We have work ahead of us as we continue to work on team blocking and serve receive in particular," said Head Coach Greg Ryan, noting that having a few bugs to work out is expected for the season's first weekend. "We have a better team atmosphere than any of the last few years."
With that kind of positive attitude, look for the Dinos to rebound with a solid performance on the road against the Trinity Western University Spartans Nov. 11-12.