Kings 3 Vikings 1
The RDC Kings have their sights set on finishing first during the Alberta Colleges Men’s Volleyball League regular season, which meant not giving anything away to the University of Alberta, Augustana Vikings.
“We needed to win both matches this weekend if we want to reach our primary goal, which is first place,” said Kings head coach Aaron Schulha, following a 25-22, 19-25, 25-12, 25-20 victory over the Vikings before close to 400 fans at RDC Saturday.
The Kings, 14-4, needed five games to win at Camrose Friday, but have their fate in their own hands.
They need to at least split with NAIT next weekend to go into the playoffs in first place.
Briercrest, who hosts the provincials, finished the season at 15-5 with Mount Royal at 12-5.
The Kings weren’t at their best Saturday, especially in the second set. “We worked hard, but the results weren’t there at times,” said Schulha.
“We trailed 7-3 in the third set and won 25-12, so that showed what we’re capable of.”
Schulha said they were coming off a good week of practice.
“Usually the weekend is a chance to show what you’ve accomplished during the week, but we weren’t overly crisp for whatever the reason.
“It’s two days in a row, which shouldn’t be at this time of the season.”
Schulha also had to give the Vikings credit.
“They play with a defensive attitude. They don’t let the ball hit the floor unless you make a good shot. We have more weapons and if we played defence like that we’d be that much tougher to beat.”
The Kings got a strong effort out of setter Jackson Maris and outside hitter Chris Jones came off the bench and played a key role in the last two sets.
Quentin Schmidt had 16 kills for the Kings while Boston Maris added eight kills, Matt Saunders 11 digs and Dennis Wierenga three kills and 10 digs. Jackson Maris had two kills, three stuff blocks and eight digs. Max Lesziak had eight kills for Camrose, who use Notre Dame grad Mark Willms at setter.
Queens 3 Vikings 0
The Queens sat all their starters, except for middle Leanne Price, and rolled to a 25-8, 25-21, 25-15 victory.
“It was important that everyone was involved, we need that as a team,” said Queens head coach Talbot Walton.
Walton got a strong effort from left side hitters Sydney Ponto and Telaina Snider, who had 12 and eight kills respectively, and setter Megan Wood, who ran a diversified offence.
“It was important for Megan to get some reps and she got into a nice tempo and gave our hitters a good chance to put the ball away,” said Walton, who felt the effort was a bit up and down.
“That was similar to what we saw in the first half of the season. We had new bodies in there and they have to rid themselves of thinking they have to be a leader for everyone instead of leading themselves. When then did that and communicated they played well.”