The UFV women's volleyball team

The UFV women's volleyball team

Cascades punch ticket to national title game

The University of the Fraser Valley women's volleyball team is one win away from its first national championship.

The University of the Fraser Valley women’s volleyball team is one win away from its first national championship.

Facing the Cégep Garneau Elans in the semifinals of the Canadian Colleges Athletic Association (CCAA) national tournament in Lloydminster, Alta., the top-ranked Cascades rallied from an early deficit to defeat the fifth-seeded squad from Quebec City in four sets (19-25, 25-13, 25-17, 25-22) on Friday.

UFV got 14 kills from Krista Hogewoning, 13 kills and eight blocks from national player of the year Kayla Bruce, nine kills and 12 digs from Jenna Evans, and 25 digs from Brittany Stewart. Alyssa Fields-Bouchard paced the Elans’ attack with eight kills.

The Cascades were coming off another four-set win (25-23, 25-22, 21-25, 25-20) over the Mount Saint Vincent University Mystics of Halifax in Thursday’s opening round. Evans led the way with a team-high 12 kills.

UFV will play the winner of Friday’s late semifinal between the host Lakeland College Rustlers and the Collège Édouard-Montpetit Lynx for the CCAA title. The final goes at 8 p.m. Mountain time (7 p.m. Pacific) on Saturday.

BEARCATS TO PLAY FOR SEVENTH

Abbotsford’s other team at women’s volleyball nationals, the Columbia Bible College Bearcats, lost its first two games.

CBC, the seventh seed, fell in four sets on Thursday to No. 2 Édouard-Montpetit, despite 12 kills from Jill Ratzlaff, nine kills from Sadie Ball and 22 digs from Sharaya Schulte.

The Bearcats, making their national championship debut, still had a chance to win their way to the bronze medal game on the consolation side, but they dropped a five-set decision to the Humber Hawks on Friday. The Hawks won the first two sets by scores of 28-26 and 25-17, but CBC rallied to win the next two by matching 25-22 scores. The comeback stalled in the fifth set, though, as Humber won 15-4. Ball notched a team-high 14 kills for the Bearcats.

The CBC women take on Mount Saint Vincent in the seventh-eighth placing game on Saturday at 2 p.m.