By Sam Beaudoin
The Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU) women’s volleyball team completed the weekend sweep of the Windsor Lancers on Sunday with a 3-0 victory at the Mattamy Athletic Centre.
The Bold entered the match fresh off their first victory of the season, with a 3-1 win on Saturday against their newly acquitted rivals.
“I’m very happy with the way we’re currently playing,” said Bold head coach Dustin Reid. “We feel we could have won every set we’ve played thus far this season.”
This weekend series matchup was one that members of the team had circled on their calendars since last season—after a frustrating and chirping-filled trip to Windsor last year saw the Bold come away winless.
“It feels really good, it’s been a long time coming,” said fourth-year hitter Mikayla Sherriffs. “We’ve talked about this match for a while, it feels good to know our system is working.”
The opening set of the match saw both teams trade blows early with neither team able to establish a notable lead. Windsor held the lead in the early portions of the frame due to a handful of unforced errors from the Bold.
TMU found their game midway through the set and perfectly displayed the brand of volleyball they aspire to play this season. The home side evenly distributed the wealth offensively as they attacked the net.
The Bold relied on their versatility at the net to take over late in the set. Third-year hitter Scarlett Gingera, fourth-year middle Ashley Ditchfield and fifth-year outside hitter Lauren Veltman each hammered numerous kills through the Lancers blockers to propel the Bold to a 25-22 opening set win.
“We have depth in many different positions…if someone is really struggling nobody is stressed, we have somebody on the bench that can step in,” said Sherriffs.
The Bold carried their first set momentum into the second, getting out to an early 7-3 lead, forcing the Lancers to utilize an early timeout.
Coming out of the timeout, both teams were extremely sharp leading to a lengthy rally that saw numerous sensational digs from both sides. The back-and-forth rally was ultimately capped off with one of Gingera’s nine kills in the match.
The Bold continued to hold off the Lancers as they made numerous attempts at getting back into the set. The team was led by Ditchfield and Sherriffs who recorded a handful of their respective six blocks and seven kills in the match.
The Bold did not look back and cruised to a 25-17 set win, to take a 2-0 lead.
“We really focused on our game plan and staying patient, instead of getting frantic in key moments,” said Ditchfield. “I think that approach has really helped us thus far this season.”
Windsor bounced back in the third set, throwing everything they could at the gritty TMU squad. The Lancers were led by second-year right side Aliah Admans who hammered home a number of her team-high nine kills.
The visitors maintained a slim advantage throughout the majority of the set. However, TMU then turned to Gingera to put the game to rest.
The third-year was on fire in the later moments, recording three of her team’s final five points, propelling the Bold to a thrilling 25-23 final set victory.
“I think we’re at our best when we have a balanced attack, we have a lot of players that can score when they are put in good situations,” said Reid. “When we play in [our] system, we play very well.”
Looking ahead, the Bold will need to play in said system extremely well next weekend when they travel to St. Catharines, Ont. TMU is set to take on the two-time Ontario University Athletics defending champion, the Brock Badgers.
Reid feels his team will be put to the test, but feels confident in his squad.
“We’re going to be tested in ways we haven’t yet,” said Reid. “It’s going to be exciting, it’s always an honour to play the defending champs.”
UP NEXT: TMU face off against the two-time reigning Quigley Cup champions in a weekend series beginning on Nov. 10. First serve flies at 6 p.m. at Bob Davis Gym.