The UNB Saint John Seawolves saw their winning streak come to an end on December 2nd & 3rd as they were handed their first two losses of the season by the Holland College Hurricanes. The games, which were played at the G. Forbes Athletics Center, drew big crowds both days.
Saturday’s game started out strong, with the two top teams in the Atlantic Collegiate Athletic Association (ACAA) battling it out. Both teams traded points back and forth, with Luke O’Grady (Barrie, Ont.) acting as a powerhouse for the Seawolves. The lead went back and forth between the two teams, with neither of them being able to pull away until a couple of kills from O’Grady and Zane Hamilton (Hartland, NB.) extended the Seawolves’ lead by four points. After this, the boys didn’t look back and took the first set 25-22.
Several attack errors from the Seawolves gave the Hurricanes a 4-0 start in the second set. They were able to slip in two points of their own, but this was quickly overshadowed by another run from the Hurricanes. UNB Saint John called a timeout when the score reached 14-3, but it wasn’t enough; the Hurricanes took the second set 25-10.
The third set was much closer, with both teams trading points back and forth once again. The sets, now tied at one a piece, brought out a fierce competition from both sides, and saw a high scoring set. The Hurricanes ultimately came out on top with a score of 28-26.
The Seawolves took an early lead in the fourth set, thanks to some big kills from rookie Blake Stephenson (Hartland, NB). The 15-9 lead was slowly broken down by the Hurricanes, however, and it wasn’t until four consecutive points in the away team’s favour that UNB Saint John called a timeout. The pep talk from head coach, Kyle Blanchard, sparked something in the Wolves and they were able to continue their streak and ended the set with a score of 25-21.
The fifth set saw both teams come out strong, trading points back and forth until the Hurricanes began to pull away. The set ended on an attack error from Hamilton with a score of 15-12, concluding the game 3-2 for Holland College.
With this loss, O’Grady has a season high of 16 kills, and setter Patrick Kendall (Fredericton, NB.) has tossed up 41 assists. Holland College’s Brent Butler has landed 15 kills with the win.
Sunday’s game saw a long rally to start off the first set, which allowed the Seawolves to take a 3-0 lead. Holland was able to slowly climb their way back due to service errors from UNB Saint John. Aces from Holland College’s Gordon Veitch gave the Hurricanes their first lead of the game. Both teams continued to trade points back and forth, with the Hurricanes holding the upper hand. A couple of errors from the Seawolves gave the Hurricanes the set, with a final score of 28-26.
The second set saw more of the same, with both teams exchanging points back and forth, with some big service errors from both teams. The second set ended with a score 27-25 for the Hurricanes.
The Hurricanes were able to take an early lead in the third set, and it was one that they didn’t give up for the remainder of the set. More service errors plagued the Seawolves and they were ultimately defeated 25-21 in the final set, and the game ended with a score of 3-0 in the Hurricanes’ favour.
This marks the end for the Seawolves first semester, and they will return to play against the St. Thomas University Tommies on January 14th at 4:00pm in Fredericton. Games can be streamed online at acaatv.ca