After rallying back from an 0-2 deficit, the Trinity Western Spartans were a point away from victory in the fifth and decisive set against the Calgary Dinos.
But instead, it was the host Dinos scoring the match’s final six points to win the set 16-14 and take the match 3-2 (25-21,25-15,22-25,20-25,16-14), handing the Spartans men’s volleyball team their first loss of the season.
It also dropped Trinity Western (7-1) from first to second in the most recent CIS national polls.
Calgary improved to 5-3.
“This was a tough one tonight,” said coach Ben Josephson. “Full credit to our opponents; they were great. They served us into trouble and we couldn’t match their service pressure.
“They defended the ball great and we had a hard time playing with the same amount of passion that they did.”
Ryan Sclater accumulated a career-high 16 kills and nine digs while Brad Kufske added 13 kills. Libero Tyler Koslowsky had 10 digs.
While Josephson was pleased to see his team battle back in the match, they did not get the job done.
“But exceptional teams finish. We want to be an exceptional team and we didn’t finish,” he said.
“That means the pursuit of being exceptional continues.”
The Spartans had defeated Calgary 3-0 (25-22,25-23,26-24) the previous night.
“We were a little off today; we had to play greasy,” Josephson said.
“But we did a good enough job and made just enough plays to steal the three sets for the win.”
The Spartans host winless Regina Cougars in a pair of matches on Nov. 22 and 23 at the Langley Events Centre.