Briercrest reserves star in sweep of Olds Broncos
Friday evening saw the first meeting of the 2016-17 season between the Briercrest College Clippers and the Olds College Broncos. Briercrest’s appearance at #15 in the CCAA weekly rankings is a reflection of their inspired play against formidable ACAC South Division competitors so far this season, while the inexperienced Olds squad was looking to win its first set of the year.
Out of the gate both teams showed a lack of polish on offense and made fundamental errors on serve and reception. Mitch Erickson distinguished himself for Briercrest with an early display of power from the weak side and the service line as Briercrest surged to a 15-11 lead. Olds’ Waylon Auger uncorked a pair of powerful kills, one on a Briercrest over bump, as the visitors sliced the deficit in half, but thunderous hits by Mitch Erickson, Joel Rosewarn, and Bryan Fountain pushed the home team to a 25-19 win.
Set two opened with aggressive hitting from Olds’ Auger and Tarren Dion, who somehow managed to squeeze a spike between two Briercrest blockers. Bryan Fountain launched a series of bullets on serve, followed in turn by Mitch Erickson, who scored five consecutive points. Setter Matt Ginter connected with middle Brad Harms for several memorable kills, including the hit of the match, a step-around to the weak side. Bennett Rosewarn and Brad Harms baffled the Olds’ serve reception with an array of float serves, and Briercrest cruised to an easy 25-10 victory.
Briercrest continued to ride the serving prowess of Bennett Rosewarn and Brad Harms as they built a 9-2 advantage. Although the inexperience of Olds was evident, Waylon Auger and Mohammed Eltassi determined to keep their squad in the match as they wowed the crowd with exceptional hitting and serving. In the end, however, Briercrest possessed more than enough skill to score a 25-19 triumph, sweeping the match 3-0.
The Player of the Game for Olds was Tarren Dion, who registered four digs and five kills. Waylon Auger also starred for the visitors with nine kills. Brad Harms was a force to be reckoned with from the service line and in the middle and was recipient of POG honours for Briercrest, notching six kills and two aces. The match was a boon for coach Nigel Mullan as Briercrest’s bench players saw the lion’s share of the action.