EDMONTON - One night after picking up career overall win number 800, University of Alberta head coach Laurie Eisler earned her 400th career conference victory as the Pandas defeated the University of Winnipeg Wesmen by a 3-0 score (25-18, 25-20, 25-22), Saturday night at Saville Community Sports Centre.
Alberta (4-4) earned a straight-sets victory for the second night in a row, led by Kory White’s 16 kills. Winnipeg (2-6) was led offensively by Taylor Boughton and Ashleigh Laube, who had eight kills each.
The Pandas started the match strongly, jumping out to a 16-11 lead at the first set’s technical timeout, building upon that advantage during the remainder of the set for a 25-18 victory.
The second set was a little closer at the beginning, as the two sides essentially traded the first twenty points of the set before the Pandas were able to take control and cruise to a 25-20 win.
Winnipeg showed plenty of fight in the third set, displaying some scrappy defense as they hung tough with Alberta throughout much of the stanza before the Pandas was able to pull away late to clinch the victory.
Winnipeg fired nine aces throughout the match, but the .314 kill percentage posted by the Pandas was just too much on this night.
Alberta is one of the powerhouse programs in Canada West and the team admits they’ve had a slow start to the season, however they feel momentum is starting to build.
“Every game is a battle, and this is our first sweep of the season, so it definitely feels good,” said Pandas third-year outside hitter Julia Zonneveld. “I think adversity makes us stronger, and we’re only building and growing as a team.”
Winnipeg plays a home-and-home series with their rivals from the University of Manitoba next weekend, with the first of the two matches at The Duckworth Centre on Friday, November 22.
Alberta heads south to Calgary to face Mount Royal University next weekend. Their next action at home will be on November 29th and 30th when they host UBC. You can catch every match live and on demand on canadawest.tv.