Calgary and TWU open Canada West men's playoffs with victories

CALGARY - The University of Calgary Dinos and Trinity Western University Spartans won their opening matches in their respective best-of-three Canada West quarterfinal men’s volleyball series on Thursday night.

In Calgary, the fourth-ranked Dinos, defeated the University of Manitoba Bisons 27-25, 23-25, 25-12, 27-25.

Graham Vigrass led the Dinos with 11 kills and seven digs, while Curtis James added 10 and five. Ciaran McGovern added 10 digs from the setter position. The Bisons were led by Chris Voth, who had 10 kills, while Steve Goertzen and John Galloway combined for 15.

Dinos head coach Rod Durrant knows his troops can play much better. 

“It’s always nice to win the first match, but we just got to clean up some things on our side of the court,” said Durrant. “We have to focus on us and what we’re doing and we need to be better than that.”

“We fought hard in a couple of tight sets, and that first set we served well,” he continued. “We just need to be more consistent and steady throughout the whole entire match.”

In Langley, B.C., the number-seven Spartans defeated the sixth ranked University of Winnipeg Wesmen 25-23, 25-20, 28-30, 25-22. Steven Marshall and Marc Howatson led TWU offensively with 19 and 14 kills respectively. Justin Duff registered 24 kills for Winnipeg and Andrew Town had 15.

Game two of both series take place Friday evening at the same venue with the Bisons-Dinos match starting at 5:30 p.m. (local time) and the Wesmen-Spartans encounter at 7 p.m..

Game one of the Thompson River UniversityBrandon University series starts Friday in Brandon at 7 pm. The University of Alberta has a bye to the Final Four after finishing first in regular season play.

In Ontario, the sudden-death quarterfinals starts Friday with Toronto at Queen’s University in Kingston at 7 p.m. On Saturday, Guelph is at Windsor at 2 p.m. and Waterloo at Western in London at 4 p.m. McMaster has a first place bye to the Final Four.

In Quebec, the best of three championship final between the undefeated Laval Rouge et Or and Université de Montreal starts Sunday in Quebec City at 2 p.m.

In the Atlantic Conference, the best of three championship final between University of New Brunswick and Dalhousie starts Friday in Halifax at 5 p.m. with game two Sunday in Fredericton at 1 p.m.

Women’s Final Fours

The Final Four tournaments in women’s volleyball start Friday for the Canada West Conference at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg and McMaster University in Hamilton.

In Winnipeg, the number-one ranked UBC Thunderbirds put their perfect 20-0 record on the line opening against the Regina Cougars on Friday. Manitoba meets Trinity Western University. The winners advance to the final and the losers play for bronze on Saturday.

At McMaster, Queen`s opens against the hosts while Toronto takes on Western. The medal matches are on Saturday.