Max Sturley, Dinos Communications
CALGARY – It was a strong start to the season for the University of Calgary Dinos as they came away with a 3-1 decision (26-24, 25-15, 20-25, 25-11) over the Thompson Rivers Wolfpack on Friday night at the Jack Simpson Gym.
"It felt so good that we pulled out a win, especially on opening weekend," said Dinos outside hitter Gavin Taylor, who was named the Dinos player of the match.
The two Taylor's, Gavin Taylor and Tim Taylor led the charge for Dinos, finishing the night with nine and eight kills respectively. The WolfPack as expected were led by Tim Dobbert, who finished with an impressive 20 kills.
In the first set, Gavin Taylor's five kills helped the Dinos edge out the closest set of the evening, as both sides alternated points in the second half of the set before the Dinos pulled away with 26-24 opening set win. The Dinos were able to convert on 57 percent of their attacks in the opening set, compared to the WolfPacks' 50 percent.
Heading into the second set, Liam Laidlaw displayed his blocking prowess, allowing the Dinos to pull away with a 25-15 set win. Laidlaw finished the night with nine total blocks, including two solo blocks.
Thompson Rivers' Anton Napolitano topped out at three blocks.
The WolfPack showed some pushback in the third set, with Dobbert and Charlie Bringloe leading the way while taking advantage of Calgary errors. The Dinos struggled in the third, topping out at eight service errors and six attacking errors, compared to the WolfPacks' four and six. The Wolfpack kept the game alive with a 25-20 set win.
The final set was pure domination by the Dinos as they held a double-digit lead quickly. The script flipped from the third set as Thompson Rivers began to make miscues. The Dinos closed with 11 fourth set kills to take it 25-11 and close out the match.
Photo by David Moll