Mount Royal draws first blood in crucial Crowchild Classic matchup

Mount Royal draws first blood in crucial Crowchild Classic matchup

Lindsay Franco, Calgary Dinos Communications

CALGARY- The University of Calgary men's volleyball team rallied a tough match against the Mount Royal University Cougars in four sets on Thursday night at the Jack Simpson Gymnasium, suffering a 3-1 defeat. Scores were 21-25, 25-23, 14-25, 23-25.

In set one, the Dinos seemed unable to take lead, but continued to press the rivals, finding ways to equalize the score throughout. After the set was tied at 14-all, MRU gained momentum and took charge, finishing 25-21. The Dinos had 10 kills in the set, and the team hit a .15.

Though Calgary went up 10-8 in set two after a kill by Curtis Stockton, the Cougars quickly retaliated, and found a 21-17 lead. Attack error by the rivals, along with several kills by Stockton, put the Dinos back in front to lock the set at 25-23. Throughout, the Dinos hit .19, and 11 kills, with Stockton ringing-in nine, and Alex Bader with Mitchell Higgin each contributing one.

In the third and fourth sets, the Dinos were unable to find luck and momentum, falling behind the Cougars by several points. The Dinos hit .04 for the third set with seven errors, and, in the fourth set, ended the play with an even .03 and 10 kills.

Stockton led the Dinos in double-digit kills with 20 and .20, gaining 21.5 points for the team. Bader was also crucial to the game development, recording 9 kills throughout and grabbing.065. As a whole, Calgary hit 117 in attacks, 39 kills, 27 attack errors, and a .103.

Head coach Rod Durrant was pleased by the fan turnout at the Crowchild Classic Block Party, but expressed a desire to see more from his team. "It was one of the best crowds we've seen in years, the boys did a great job marketing it, and it's always an enjoyable event for student athletes. That being said, we threw ourselves behind in every set, and it's a tough way to play the game, even in front of such a large home support. We need to make adjustments, especially in terms of a blocking and serving. At one point, our serving got very passive, allowing the other team to stay in system, and take care of our serves very easily."

Rookie Parker Siroishka agreed with the coach adding that the team "lacked fire throughout. We had it for the majority, but it lacked constancy. This will be addressed and we will come back into the next game hungry for success."

The Dinos will once again face the Cougars on Saturday, November 26, at Kenyon Court (MRU). Kick-off is scheduled for 6 p.m.