By Emilie Medland-Marchen, January 18, 2016 —
The Dinos women’s volleyball team came up short in their matches against Trinity Western University on Jan. 15–16, losing both of their home games.
The first of these games was a hard-fought back-and-forth affair throughout its five sets. The Dinos’ loss came in final portion of the game, when the Spartans closed out the match with a 15–13 fifth set, quashing the University of Calgary’s comeback attempt.
Game two continued this back-and-forth trend. The Dinos and Spartans traded points until the end of each set, but the U of C was repeatedly inched out by Trinity Western. The match ended in the third set with a devastating 0–3 loss (25–20, 28–26, 25–20).
While the Dinos battled hard, they seemed to be missing the previous night’s spark. Dinos head coach Natalie Gurnsey said her team was outplayed defensively.
“Trinity definitely made some changes from how they blocked and defended us,” Gurnsey said. “They definitely made us adjust offensively.”
That adjustment was prevalent in the second set, as the Dinos fought back with hard hits and closed the scoring gap. But the Spartans negated the Dinos’ new approach in the final minutes of the second set, overtaking them once again and ending the set 28–26.
The pair of losses were a significant step back for the Dinos after coming off two wins against the University of Regina last week. The team has struggled all season to find their footing since losing veterans Kate Pexman and Jaylynn Moffatt in the preseason. The team was looking for redemption this semester with Moffatt’s return, though Pexman is still out with injury.
Gurnsey felt the return of Moffatt helped her team post a strong performance, even though it ended as a loss.
“Jaylynn has been a huge help for us,” Gurnsey said. “She had a phenomenal night last night and helped us a ton.”
Despite the loss, Gurnsey feels that the offensive success of her team still shone through.
“I think that it’s disappointing after we had such a phenomenal night last night,” Gurnsey said. “But I think there’s still some highlights, some things we did really well against a very good team. I feel like we were a little out of rhythm tonight.”
Although the women’s team has faced a year of bitter losses, they’re heading into the rest of their schedule with a positive attitude.
“We play MacEwan [next weekend] and that’s a big game for us,” Gurnsey said. “It’s really important that we come and help get some sweeps down the stretch so we get into a good playoff position.”
The Dinos now look ahead to a back-to-back with MacEwan University next weekend. The first of the two matches begins at 6:00 p.m. on Jan. 22 at the Jack Simpson Gym.