REGINA – The top-seeded University of British Columbia Thunderbirds rallied against the No. 6 seed Laval Rouge et Or in four sets on Saturday to advance to the CIS women’s volleyball championship final.
Set matches were 26-24 for Laval and 25-13, 25-21, and 25-18 for the Thunderbirds.
With the win, UBC earned a berth into the finals for the seventh consecutive year. It will face No. 2-seeded Manitoba — who beat Dalhousie earlier in the day — on Sunday.
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Lisa Barclay led all players with 20 kills and hit .410 in the win while teammate Abbey Keeping had 15 kills and just one error on 25 attacks for a match-high .560 hitting percentage to earn UBC player of the match honours.
The Thunderbirds dominated at the net, outblocking Laval by a 26-9 margin. Keeping had a match-high eight blocks.
Both Eve Thibault and Esther Gilbert had 10 kills for Laval, while Alyssa Fields-Bouchard had a team-high four blocks and added eight kills. Sophie Dallaire also had eight kills and eight digs, while Valerie Lemay had a match-leading 16 digs.
Laval will play No. 6 seed Dalhousie for bronze on Sunday.
Manitoba advanced to the finals with a three-set sweep over Dalhousie. Set scores were 25-22, 25-13, 25-21.
Mariel Garcia helped the Bisons with a .556 hitting percentage, going 10-for-18 with no errors and adding eight digs. Taylor Pischke added 12 kills and had just two errors while hitting .370, and Caleigh Dobie had a team-leading nine digs for Manitoba.
Dalhousie’s defence ended up with a total of 43 digs and 11 blocks, with Katherine Ryan leading the way with 13 digs. Desiree Nouwen led all players with 17 kills on 42 attacks and also added an assisted block to end up with 17.5 points.
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