TWU volleyball: Dinos win national championship rematch

Trinity Western Spartans
Trinity Western Spartans' Lucas Van Berkel delivers a kill against the Calgary Dinos on Saturday night at the Langley Events Centre. While the Spartans won this point, the Dinos took both matches over the weekend in a rematch of last spring's national championship game, also won by Calgary.
— image credit: John Gordon/Langley Times

The Trinity Western Spartans had a chance to extract some revenge, but wound up suffering the same fate as last March: watching the Calgary Dinos celebrate at their expense.

In a rematch of last spring's Canadian Interuniversity Sport national men's volleyball championship final, it was once again Calgary coming away victorious.

The Spartans won the first set on Friday night, but then dropped the next six to lose both matches, 3-1 (15-25,25-22,25-22,25-20) and 3-0 (29-27,25-23,25-21) at the Langley Events Centre.

Trinity Western was ranked third in the country heading into the weekend with Calgary fourth.

Calgary improved to 12-0 while the Spartans fell to 8-4.

In Saturday's game, the Spartans had late leads in both sets, but were unable to close them out.

"We were the first to 18, first to 20 and first to 23 in the first two sets, but we lost both," said coach Ben Josephson. "That's it, it's that simple. If you spot a team two sets, it's next to over.

"They (Calgary) are too good to lose three in a row. I thought we were too good t lose three in a row, but apparently not."

Reception errors and missed serves were key factors in the loss, he added.

The Spartans were led on the attack by Josh Doornenbal, who had 13 kills, and Rudy Verhoeff, who had 10 kills and a team-high 11 digs. Setter Ben Ball had a game-high 35 assists and a team-high four blocks.

In Friday's loss, Josephson said his team got beat in every single category.

"There is not a phase where we were the better team tonight, outside of playing a little more aggressive in the first set," he said.

Doornenbal again led the way with 18 kills and four blocks, while Verhoeff had 14 kills and 18 digs. Ball had 40 set assists.

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