CAMPUS EXAMPLE: Calgary Dino’s Host of Perfect Pair of Volleyball Rivals

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It’s a battle of nationally-ranked teams this weekend as the Calgary Dinos men’s volleyball team returns to action and welcomes the Alberta Golden Bears to the Jack Simpson Gym for a few games, starting Friday.

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Calgary goes into the weekend with a 5-3 record and is 10th in the most recent national rankings, while Alberta comes to the city at No. 2 in the country and is a perfect 8-0 so far.

The first service on Friday will follow the conclusion of the women’s competition and is scheduled for 7:30 PM, while the action will start at 5:00 PM on Saturday

The Dinos season will resume after the planned holiday break. In their final games before the break, the Dinos split games with the Mount Royal Cougars. Five-year veteran Hamish Hazelden racked up a whopping 29 kills in a five-setter before rookie Erik Godwin made his first start and played a key role in the three-set sweep a day later.

Several Dinos have impressed so far this season. Calgary’s offense plays an exciting and dynamic volleyball and is led by Hazelden, who is eighth in U SPORTS for kills per set of 3.97. Hazelden also appears in the top 10 in many other categories, including total kills (115), hit rate (.374) and digs (57).

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Tomas Sorra, the star setter of the Dinos, has also had a strong season. Sorra is in the top 15 for assists per set, averaging a remarkable 8.7.

Freshman Dino Louis Kuntsmann also made a name for himself early in his U SPORTS career. The young midfielder has established himself as a defensive presence, using his height to disrupt the opponent’s attack. Kuntsmann currently averages just over one block per set, good enough to place him in the top-15 in all of Canada.

The Dinos have yet to drop a home game this season, playing at Jack Simpson Gym for the first time since mid-November. This weekend will prove to be their biggest challenge yet as the Golden Bears looked great all season and head into the weekend with that unblemished 8-0 score.

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Alberta is led by Braedon Friesen (3.52 kills per set), Max Elgert (10.12 assists per set) and Jordan Canham (0.367 hit percentage).

The Golden Bears won both previous games against the Dinos in November, winning four of their last five against the Dinos.

VOLLEYBALL WOMEN

After a break from the action, the Dinos women’s volleyball team returns to the field at the Jack Simpson Gym this weekend to take on the nation’s number 1 team, the undefeated Alberta Pandas.

The first service will take place on Friday at 6:00 PM, followed by another match on Saturday, starting after the men’s race at around 6:30 PM

After a 2-6 start, the Dinos will try to shake off the fall semester and ring in the new year by giving the Pandas their first loss of the season. The Dinos will host the U SPORTS Women’s Volleyball Championship at the Jack Simpson Gym from March 25-27.

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While the Dinos have one of the younger rosters in the entire country this season, those newcomers have shown they have a lot of talent. Most of the key stat leaders for the Dinos are freshman players, including Michela Alongi with 103 digs, Sheridan Coninx with 23 total blocks, and Sophie Reed with 63 kills. Five of the top six Dinos in sets played this season are also in their first collegiate season.

Freshman libero Alongi has 103 digs in the season, cracking the top five in Western Canada. She is just one spot behind Panda’s fourth-year libero Jenae Eisler, who has 104.

The Pandas’ player to watch is Kory White, fifth year, who leads the team in offensive stats and has 98 kills so far this season.

Alberta leads Canada West with service aces, posting 73 in their first eight games.

The Pandas have yet to be pushed to a fifth set this season, winning five of their matches in sweeps, while winning their other three matches in a 3-1 final.

Freshman setter Edan Wade is one assist shy of hitting 200.

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