Sports

Heat cooking after sweep of Manitoba

Fouth-year power hitter Myrte Schön helped the UBC Okanagan Heat complete a weekend sweep of the Manitoba Bisons in Canada West women
Fouth-year power hitter Myrte Schön helped the UBC Okanagan Heat complete a weekend sweep of the Manitoba Bisons in Canada West women's volleyball.
— image credit: Dale Abbey

It hasn't taken long for the UBCO Okanagan Heat to establish themselves as a legitimate contender in Canada West women's volleyball.

In just their second season of CIS competition, the Heat have won six of their first eight matches and are just a game out of top spot in the conference.

The hometown Heat swept the No. 6-ranked Manitoba Bisons over the weekend at UBCO,  and have already equalled their win total (6-12) from the entire 2011-12 season.

After winning in five sets Friday, the Heat completed the sweep on Saturday at The Furnace with a dominant 3-0 (25-10, 25-20, 25-9) victory.

“Easily our best showing all year,” Heat head coach Steve Manuel said of Saturday's win. “That is as good of a performance as a team can put together. ”

The numbers may not have shown it, but libero Lenai Schmidt was the key for the Heat as  she surrendered just one service reception error while adding 18 digs.

Katy Klomps continued to feast on CIS competition, tallying 12 kills on 15 attempts for an unparalleled .733 kill percentage, while Myrte Schön added 12 kills on 33 attempts.

On Friday night, the Heat won a five-set thriller over the Bisons (25-22, 25-23, 21-25, 18-25, 15-11).

Schön had five kills in the decisive fifth set as the Heat came from behind in the fifth set.

With six wins in eight starts, the Heat find themselves among the elite teams in Canada West, just a game back of UBC and TWU for top spot.

“Things are starting to come together for us,” added Manuel. “We have the pieces to be a very good team in the CIS. It’s just a matter of maintaining that level of play.”

The Heat will be tested this weekend as they travel to Edmonton for a pair of matches against the No. 3 Alberta Pandas.

“Things are starting to come together for us,” added Manuel. “We have the pieces to be a very good team in the CIS. It’s just a matter of maintaining that level of play.”

This weekend, the Heat will be put to the test on the road as they visit the No. 3 ranked Alberta Pandas for two matches in Edmonton.

Heat men

Unlike the women, the UBCO men's struggles continue they search elusive first win of the Canada West season.

The Heat, still without the services all-star and fifth-year power hitter Nate Speijer, dropped a pair of home-court matches to the Manitoba Bisons over the weekend to slip to 0-8 in 2012-13.

On Friday, the No. 4-ranked Bisons rolled the Heat in three sets (25-20, 25-8, 25-15).

"It's going to take quite a bit of execution and a lot of heart to compete with a team like that," said Heat coach Greg Poitras. "We looked scared and our team just didn't have the courage to be really tough."

Outside hitter Greg Niemantsverdriet and sophomore Jon Russo were co-leaders for the Heat offense Friday night, each notching seven kills.

On Saturday, a better effort by the Heat but another three-set loss (25-19, 25-17, 25-23) to the Bisons.

"We played with some heart and made some good plays,” Poitras said.

Russo earned player of the game honours and was the top Heat attacker with 11 kills on the night.

Speijer, whose attacking skills have been sorely missed, remains sidelined while recovering from an appendectomy.

 

This weekend, the Heat travel to Edmonton for two matches with the Golden Bears.

 

 

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