WolfPack Scorched By Heat In Opener of Women’s Volleyball Series

By Larry Read - TRU Athletics
November 27, 2015 - 11:16am Updated: December 9, 2015 - 12:50pm

The Thompson Rivers University WolfPack looked a bit rusty as they were beaten in straight sets by the visiting University of British Columbia Okanagan Heat 3-0 in Canada West women’s volleyball action.

Playing on the Warner Rentals court at the Tournament Capital Centre on Thursday (Nov 26), the scores were 25-17,25-9,25-10. TRU falls to 5-6 on the year while the Heat move to 10-1.

“Our team is slowly but surely developing that killer instinct,” said Heat head coach Steve Manuel. “ They came out tonight and the will of them wanting to do it. They played unbelievable ball tonight. Hats off to the athletes themselves. They played flawless volleyball tonight.”

The Heat were coming off two weekends on the road in Calgary and Brandon. “I am surprised at the level they played tonight but not surprised that they played well. We have a pretty good core and plan with rest even though it was a tough trip back. We gave them a day and a half off completely. We made the decision that rest was more important than prep. It shows how hard they worked in the off season and how hard they have worked to this point to be able to come off back to back road trips and play here on Thursday and pull out a performance like that. It was just awesome.”

“As a group we weren’t prepared,” stated WolfPack head coach Chad Grimm. “From top to bottom, we weren’t ready to play. That is what we have to figure out. Obviously, serve-reception was a huge turnover for us today. Giving a team like UBCO free ball after free ball and letting them run their offense. That makes it a long night for our team.”

UBCO was led by Brianna Beamish (5th year, middle, Surrey, BC) with 14 kills in 24 chances with five service aces, five digs, two solo blocks and one block assist. Megan Festival (4th year, outside hitter, Calgary, AB) had nine kills in 15 chances with three service aces and five digs. She added two block assists. Emily Oxland (4th year, setter, North Vancouver, BC) had 29 assists, one service aces, three digs and two block assists.

The Heat had 10 service aces to TRU’s four.

The WolfPack were led by Iuliia Pakhomenko (4th year, outside hitter, Donetsk, Ukraine). She had 10 kills in 14 chances with two assists, a dig and a solo block. Krista Hogewoning (5th year, outside hitter, Delta, BC) had five kills in 24 chances with a service ace and four digs. She was named the TRU Bookstore/McDonalds “Leader of the Pack” Player of the Match. Katie Woo (4th year, setter, Surrey, BC) had 17 assists and four digs.

Grimm got a chance to put Robyn Froese (4th year, setter, Red Deer,AB) and Samantha Sonnenberg (3rd year, middle, Edmonton, AB) into action. Froese played one set while Sonnenberg was in for two sets earning a kill and two service aces.

“They came out and worked their hardest and did the best they could,” Grimm said about the two. “ I think collectively, we didn’t have a competitive drive. We didn’t recover very well from mistakes. We didn’t put ourselves in position defensively to make up for our serve-reception deficiencies.”

The two teams will close out the weekend series on Saturday (November 28th) in Kelowna. TRU doesn’t have a home match until Friday, January 15, 2016 when they entertain the University of Saskatchewan Huskies. Game time at the TCC will be 6 pm.

Griffins Spoil Piggin’s First Half: Sweep WolfPack At Home