Spartans stretch streak

Eleven straight victories for Trinity Western University men’s volleyball team

Trinity Western Spartans Nick Del Bianco soars for a kill during his team's weekend set against the Saskatchewan Huskies. The Spartans won 3-1 and 3-2 to stretch their Canada West winning streak to 11 matches.

Trinity Western Spartans Nick Del Bianco soars for a kill during his team's weekend set against the Saskatchewan Huskies. The Spartans won 3-1 and 3-2 to stretch their Canada West winning streak to 11 matches.

After spotting the opposition a lead on both nights, the Trinity Western Spartans battled back to extend their Canada West winning streak to 11 matches.

The Spartans were hosting the Saskatchewan Huskies over the weekend at the Langley Events Centre.

The Spartans men’s volleyball team — ranked third in the country —  improved to 18-4 and clinched a home playoff date in the process and they are one game back of first-place Alberta with two games remaining in the regular season.

“It was a greasy win. It was never smooth, but that’s a credit to Saskatchewan,” said TWU coach Ben Josephson.

“They made it hard on us and kept the pressure on us serving wise. They’re big, physical guys and they made it hard to score.

“I thought our guys found a way to win on a bad night; we made just enough plays and (ground) it out.”

The Huskies took the first two sets 25-23 and 25-21 before TWU stayed alive with a 25-18 win in set three and 25-18 in set four. The decisive set was 15-12 for the Spartans.

Ryan Sclater (18 kills, three aces, 10 digs), Nick Del Bianco (14 kills, eight digs) and Blake Scheerhoorn (11 kills, five blocks) led the attack. Branden Schmidt had a match-high six blocks and Tyler Koslowsky had a match-high 11 digs. Adam Schriemer had 43 assists.

In Friday’s opener, Saskatchewan won the opener 25-22 before the Spartans stormed back with 25-20, 25-14 and 25-19 victories.

A big turnaround was the fact the team made just six attack errors over the final three sets, hitting .478 as a team.

Del Bianco had a season-high 23 kills, while hitting .583 and also collecting four blocks and two aces.

Daniel Grant had a match-high eight blocks as the Spartans out-blocked the Huskies 17-3.

The Spartans close the regular season with a pair of games in Winnipeg against the Wesmen this weekend.

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