Briercrest loses exciting quarter-final to number one ranked Red Deer
By Jadon Frank
Briercrest women’s volleyball lost 3-2 (25-23, 21-25, 25-19, 15-25, 15-6) against ACAC number one ranked and Championship host Red Deer College February 22, 2013.
Briercrest had an epic game in their return to the ACAC Championship for the first time since they finished sixth in the 2009-10 season. After getting to the tournament as the eighth seed through the qualification tournament the previous weekend, Briercrest was the underdog facing the number one seeded Red Deer College. Briercrest was confident as entering the game as they had lost two close five set matches against Red Deer only a few weeks earlier.
After Red Deer College took the first set with a tight back and forth 25-23 score, Briercrest came out strong in a crazy second set. Briercrest jumped out to a 20-10 lead before Red Deer cut the score to 20-16. First-year middle Whitney Zylstra (Chilliwack, BC) then had a key kill to help Briercrest regroup and bringing the lead up to 23-18. Red Deer then scored the next two points to bring the Briercrest lead to only 23-20 before they finished the set 25-21.
Red Deer bounced back in the third set to win 25-19 before Briercrest came back to win the fourth set convincingly 25-15 to tie the score at two sets a piece to force a fifth set. Red Deer’s showed why they were number one in the standings in the fifth set to convincingly win the set 15-6 and the match 3-1.
Head Coach Nolan Weinmaster shared his thoughts after the game.
“Disappointing to lose after a great battle but I am really proud of all of our girls and the way we battled tonight. Red Deer is a great team and we just made it too easy on them in the fifth set by make too many errors. We put a lot of pressure on them for the first four sets and it was great to see our girls executing well. We know this experience will help us in the future and things look really bright for us next year! We have an opportunity to gain some more valuable playoff experience playing for 5th place tomorrow and Sunday.”
Briercrest’s player of the game was outside hitter and floor captain Mikayla Reinhardt (second year; Strathmore, AB) with a game high 15 kills and eight digs.
Briercrest held the edge in kills with 45 and service aces with 10 in comparison to Red Deer with 41 and nine respectively. Red Deer had the edge in digs and blocks with 70 and 13 compared to 67 and eight for Briercrest.
Briercrest was led by the aforementioned Reinhardt, Erin Anderson with a game high four service aces and a team high three blocks, Brooke Peterson with a team high 16 digs, and Whitney Zylstra with three blocks.
Briercrest will now face Medicine Hat College in the consolation bracket at 3:00 pm local time with the winner playing in the fifth place game.
Follow the games online at http://www.sportscanada.tv/index.php/ccaatv/acactv. Also, be sure to "like" Briercrest Volleyball for photos and updates.