The UNB Saint John Seawolves men’s volleyball team was able to make quick work of their opponents this weekend, beating the Université Sainte-Anne Dragons 3-0 (25-12, 25-16, 25-23).
The match, which was played out at the G. Forbes Athletic Centre, was the Seawolves’ first home game of the second semester, and with their result, they are now tied with Holland College for first place in the ACAA standings.
Although there were a few lulls in each set, the Seawolves were able to pull ahead and give their bench players a chance to show their skill-set on the floor.
The first set saw the Wolves start out strong, with two service aces from setter Patrick Kendall (13), and big hits from Luke O’Grady (6) and Peter Banks (4).
This, plus a couple of errors coming from the Dragons gave the Seawolves an early 17-6 lead. The Dragons were able to catch a few more points off service errors from the Wolves, but ultimately ended the set 25-12 in favour of the home team.
The second set saw some major substitutions in the Saint John lineup, including the addition of second year Brendan Foster (2) to the court.
“[The game] went well,” said Foster, who records two kills and two blocks in the winning effort. “A lot of these games lead up to playoffs, everyone makes it in our league, so these are all big games. We’re trying to push ourselves to the top, and to become the best in the league.”
Despite the Dragons taking an early 6-3 lead in the second set, the Wolves were able to retaliate with a nine point run of their own. The Dragons then went on another run, and managed to climb back up within two.
Despite the shift in momentum the Wolves quickly shut down Sainte-Anne with some key blocks late in the second set, and took the set 25-16.
“We had a lot of lapses in the second and third sets,” said middle Herbert Compagner (12) after the game. “But we were still able to work together as a team and really grind it out and execute properly.”
The third set was almost an exact replica of the second, with the Dragons taking an early 7-3 lead before the Wolves were able to respond. Luckily, Compagner (12) was able to land some of his key attacks, and keep the imposing Dragons at bay.
Both teams traded points back and forth, evening up the score multiple times throughout the third. In the end, the Wolves emerged victorious when a big kill from Samuel Irvine (5) ended the third set 25-23.
With the win, the Saint John moves to 8 wins and 3 losses, as well as to the top of their ACAA division. This was Université Sainte-Anne’s eleventh straight loss in of the 2016-17 season.
Both teams will take a break next weekend and will play each other next on Saturday, February 4 in Pointe-de-l’Église, Nova Scotia.
The first set is scheduled for 2pm and can be live streamed at acaatv.ca.