Edmonton, AB - It was another frustrating night for the Heat men's volleyball team as they fell in three sets to the MacEwan Griffins for the second day in a row.
The Heat would have opportunities in all three sets, as they trailed by just one late on in the opener, and had the lead at some both after the technical timeout in both set two and three.
It was the service game of MacEwan that gave the Heat some issues as the Griffins had eight aces in the three set match, including three from Caleb Weiss.
The Heat will be back in action next weekend when they play their home-opener against the defending Canada West Gold Medalists in the Trinity Western Spartans.
Inside the numbers:
- For the second consecutive match, UBCO would finish with more total kills then MacEwan (36-30) but it was the hitting percentage and errors that made the difference.
- The Heat committed 25 hitting errors in the match compared to just 13 for the home team which led the a significantly higher hitting percentage (.239 - .129).
- Once again Max Heppell did his best to keep the Heat in it as the outside hitter totalled 11 kills on the night for his second consecutive double-digit performance
- Rookie Noah Campbell would play in all three sets and had eight put downs in the match on just 12 attempts.
- Max Vriend would lead the way for the home team on the night thanks to 11 kills, four digs and four total blocks in the match.
- The only other Griffins player who finished in double-figures would be Jordan Peters who had 10 put aways.
The opening frame would be tightly contested early on, with neither team having more then a three points lead prior to the technical timeout. Three Noah Campbell kills would bring UBCO within a point at 19-18, but this would be as close as they would get as MacEwan scored six of the next seven points to finish off the first set at 25-19. The Griffins offense would be nearly unstoppable in the frame as they had nine kills on just 18 total attacks.
Another opportunity would go astray in the second as the Heat would lead throughout, including a 16-14 and 18-17. Once again MacEwan closed the set extremely well, stringing together six straight points near the end to capture the second frame 25-20.
The two teams would back-and-forth early and often in the third set as the Griffins looked to close out the match. Neither team would have more then a two point lead until the end of the set and the Heat would have the lead once again following the technical timeout. Seven of the last eight points in the match would go the Griffins way, as they finished off the visitors in straight sets.
Coach Brad Hudson after the match on his lineup combinations due to a short bech in Edmonton:
"I think when you have nine people able to play, I think that's where it starts to go wrong," said Heat head coach Brad Hudson. "It's pretty tough to train with nine or 10.
"We have 17 people on our roster."
Max Heppel led the Heat with 11 kills and six digs, but the most impressive Heat performance might have come from fifth-year left-side Brennan Goski, who was thrust into the middle for the first time in his career due to injuries, producing six kills and three blocks.
"We asked him to play out of position and I thought he did a really good job," said Hudson. "It's probably his best match for us.
"He hasn't trained or played middle at all, but again when you travel with two middles and one of them gets hurt on Friday, someone has to step in."
~ Oliver Rizun, Heat Sports Information, noted from Jefferson Hagen, MacEwan