The University of Calgary Dinos got a true taste of what to expect during the playoffs this past weekend. In a battle of the second-seeded and third-seeded teams, the Dino's seemed overmatched and were thoroughly outplayed on Sat., with the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds taking the match 25-22, 25-13, 25-22. The Calgary women seemed to be caught off-guard by the athleticism of the UBC women and never truly in the game on Sat.
"UBC is a very athletic team, with possibly the best setter in the country right now," said Coach Boyles after the loss. "They really took it to us on Sat."
Sunday seemed to be a different story, as the Dinos leapt out to a quick two sets to none lead. However, the Thunderbirds were outdone. Making adjustments, UBC battled back and took the next three sets 21-25, 19-25, 25-21, 25-12, 15-9, sending the Dinos home winless. In the match, Calgary captain Julie Young led the way with 14 kills, followed by Lauren Perry, who contributed 11 kills and 15 digs. Despite UBC battling for the win, Coach Boyles was impressed by the effort.
"We bounced back with a really good performance on Sun. and had them on the ropes," said Boyles. "In their gym, with a hostile crowd, some tough calls and a lot going against us, we were very close to finishing that match in three sets."
According to Julie Young, more can be expected from this team and the weekend's effort is not indicative of how the team will perform in the playoffs.
"We started off really slow amd we were on our heels the whole time defending," said Young. "In volleyball, you can't win the game if the other team is attacking you the whole time and you have nothing to give back. The second day, we saw what they could do and stopped a lot of what they were doing the first day. We did a better job of playing as a team [on Sun]."
The Dinos have been cemented in the third-seeded position in the CIS Canada West conference. With only one match to go before the end of the season, the Dinos will use the next weekend as a tune-up for the playoffs.
"We'll look to build some momentum with a couple of wins in Kamloops this weekend and get prepared for our quarter final series with Regina back here in Calgary the following week," commented Boyles.
The playoffs are stacking up to be very intense. With the top four teams seemingly well matched, it might turn out to be a very exciting playoff run.
"The Canada West Final Four is going to be ridiculously competitive," said Boyles. "I wouldn't begin to predict the outcome of that event."