Host Keyano too much for Briercrest in bronze medal game; Acuna named tournament All-star
By Jadon Frank
Briercrest College and tournament host Keyano College faced off for bronze at the ACAC Championships. In front of a home crowd Keyano defeated Briercrest 3-0 (25-18, 25-21, 25-19).
Due to injuries and trying to get a spark from his team, coach Nigel Mullan started two rookies Jachin Karg and Josh Senneker.
Tournament host Keyano College started the game flying and forced a Briercrest timeout after building a 7-3 lead. The game went back and forth with Keyano maintaining a 4-5 point lead. Keyano extended their lead to 19-10 before a well-placed block by Josh Wendel and Carter Reimer temporarily halted the Keyano momentum. Briercrest cut the score to 21-17 and forced a Keyano timeout. Keyano scored the next point and Briercrest took a timeout. Keyano continued to put the pressure on winning the first set 25-18.
After Briercrest jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead, Keyano pushed back to cut the lead to one, before Briercrest then had another good push to bring the lead to 7-2. Keyano kept chipping at Briercrest’s lead until they tied it 9-9. The teams then played side-out volleyball until Kyle Pankratz had several attacks that the those listening online or at the game would say merited a loud call of “BANGO.” These attacks forced a Keyano timeout at 19-17 for Briercrest. Keyano responded to the timeout with four straight points to force a Briercrest timeout with Keyano leading 21-19. Briercrest pushed back for a few points before Keyano took the second set 25-21.
The third set went back and forth before Briercrest took an 8-6 lead. Keyano jumped right back to tie the game and then the team went back and forth with Briercrest taking a skim one point lead and then Keyano getting the ball back to tie up the set. Rookie player Jonah Johnson entered the game in the third set, and put together some strong plays. Keyano took a 15-12 lead and though Briercrest kept pushing back Keyano kept maintaining their 3-4 point lead and didn’t look back winning the set 25-19 and the match 3-0 (25-18, 25-21, 25-19).
For the fourth year in a row Briercrest played for a medal at the ACAC Championships, though this was the first time in the four years that Briercrest didn't leave with a medal. It was also a great opportunity for many of the young Briercrest players to gain valuable experience for the future, as only four of the players had any substantial ACAC playoff experience before the weekend.
Briercrest Player of the game was Josh Wendel with three kills, one dig and a block.
Fourth-year Briercrest libero Pablo Acuna was named as a tournament All-Star for his performance over the weekend.
Game notes: Keyano held the edge in every statistical category, 34-24 for kills, 6-0 for service aces, 44-33 for digs and 5-3 for blocks.
The game concluded the 2012-13 season for Briercrest. Be sure to "like" Briercrest Volleyball for photos and updates.