PacWest weekend wrap: Cascades v-ball women in first place

The University of the Fraser Valley women's volleyball team ensured they'd hold down first place heading into the Christmas break.

The University of the Fraser Valley women’s volleyball team ensured they’d hold down first place heading into the Christmas break by winning a pair of weekend home games against the Camosun Chargers.

The Cascades won in straight sets on Friday (25-19, 25-16, 25-18) and Saturday (25-18, 25-20, 25-11) to boost their record to 12-2, good for first in the PacWest with 24 points.

The UFV men split their weekend set with Camosun, winning in five sets Friday and falling in four sets Saturday. They’re 6-8 after the first semester.

BEARCATS WOMEN MAKE STRIDES

The Columbia Bible College Bearcats volleyball teams dropped all four weekend games to highly ranked Vancouver Island University foes on the road.

The Bearcats women, though, drew encouragement from their defeats – they took the No. 2-ranked team in the nation to five sets on both Friday and Saturday.

“I can honestly say I have never been so satisfied with a 0-2 road trip,” noted head coach Duncan Harrison, whose team sits in fifth place at 4-7. “Our compete level was by far the best it has been all season. We really started to come together and support each other in a way that we had not done to this point.”

Third-year middle April van Weiren led the upset bid with 14 kills and four blocks Friday. Rookie outside hitters Sadie Ball and Jill Ratzlaff continued their strong seasons – Ball had 20 kills and 21 digs for the weekend, while Ratzlaff banged out 21 kills and added six stuff blocks to go with her 20 digs on defence.

The Bearcats men are the defending national champs, but they suffered a pair of weekend defeats to the Mariners, currently ranked No. 1 in the country.

CBC came out flat on Friday and lost in straight sets. They put forth a better effort Saturday, but still lost in four (25-23, 25-21, 17-25, 25-16). Will Quiring led the Bearcats with 18 kills, while Tom Charbonneau had 12.

“For whatever reason, we came out really flat on Friday and when you do that against a good team like VIU, they will make you pay for it,” commented head coach Rocky Olfert.  “We made some better adjustments in Saturday’s game, but it came down to matching their consistency level.  We need to be more steady in our play and that will be key as we move forward.”

CBC goes into the break at 7-5 while the Mariners sit at 11-1.

BEARCATS HOOPSTERS STRUGGLE ON ROAD

The Bearcats basketball teams had a tough weekend on the road.

The CBC men’s hoopsters dropped a hard-fought 94-82 decision to the Kwantlen Eagles on Friday, then fell 80-56 to the Langara Falcons on Saturday. The women lost 119-52 at Kwantlen and 84-49 at Langara.

The Bearcats hoopsters are at home this weekend, hosting Capilano on Friday (women 6 p.m., men 8 p.m.) and Quest on Saturday (women 5 p.m., men 8 p.m.).