By the numbers, the Trinity Western women’s volleyball team put together the second most efficient attacking match in program history, hitting .488 to roll over Manitoba Saturday night, Nov. 16, at Investors Group Athletic Centre in Winnipeg.
Langley-based Spartans set the tone for the evening with an opening set that saw TWU earn 20 kills while hitting .731 and committing just one error.
From there, TWU continued to push its agenda, running away with its seventh consecutive three-set victory to improve to 8-0.
The loss drops Manitoba to 2-6. With the win, TWU has also now won 24 sets in a row.
Star fourth-year outside Hilary Howe led the Spartans offence, putting together an errorless .647 hitting percentage while collecting 11 kills to go with three aces and seven digs. Mikaelyn Sych also had double-digit kills with 10 at a .643 percentage.
Second-year Meaghan Mealey had one of her best nights as a Spartan, picking up four kills on five attempts without an error and adding three blocks. Ansah Odoom had nine kills and hit .571 while Langley’s Avery Heppell had seven kills and hit .545.
Olivia Heinen had 29 assists while Dora Komlodi had 11 assists.
Manitoba, who struggled with consistency in the first two sets before a valiant fight in the third, were led by first-year middle Jaidyn Spencer, who had a perfect five kills on five attempts. Laura Hill and Allison Alcock chipped in four kills apiece.
The Spartans jumped out extremely strong in the first set. Two kills from Howe and three from Odoom highlighted a 13-4 start, as TWU was able to set up their attack with little resistance from the Bisons side, eventually winning 25-12.
Trinity Western would win the second set by the same count, this time thanks to an outstanding service run from Komlodi, who stood behind the line and started ten straight point wins to take the Spartans lead from 11-9 to 21-9.
In the third, some substitutions paid off for the Bisons, who were able to set up their offence with more efficiency. Second-year libero Jordan Hamm had some great first touches, as the Bison were able to hit .265 and keep the set tied until 20-20. After that, the dominant players for the Spartans closed the door. Heppell had a kill and Howe had two more, and they finished with a 25-22 win.
TWU Head Coach Ryan Hofer described it as “a really nice game.”
“I felt we really wanted to be tough at the net. They had some key players that we knew we had to slow down. Our defence did a good job and when our offence had a chance to take a crack at the ball, they made some great shots.”
Five different Spartans, with at least five attacks, hit .545 or better.
Spartans have only dropped one set this season, suffering their lone setback in the first set of a 3-1 season-opening win over Alberta.
Up next, the Spartans return home to hosts Saskatchewan Friday, Nov. 22 and Saturday, Nov. 23 at the Langley Events Centre.