UFV Sports Friday

Women’s Basketball: Cascades heat up late to stop Spartans

The University of the Fraser Valley women’s basketball team reeled off an 18-0 run bridging the third and fourth quarters to spark a 60-47 victory over the Trinity Western Spartans on Friday evening at the Envision Athletic Centre.

The Spartans led 40-37 with just over a minute remaining in the third quarter following a Kayla Gordon layup, but the host Cascades caught fire at that point. Taylor Claggett kick-started the run with an and-one layup, and Kayli Sartori scored eight of her game-high 23 points during that stretch as UFV cruised to the double-digit victory.

The Cascades (2-1) and Spartans (2-1) complete the home-and-home set on Saturday at the Langley Events Centre, with tip-off set for 5 p.m.

The first quarter was played at a breakneck pace – the two teams traded baskets in the early going, and the Cascades led 21-19 at the end of the frame.

The offences cooled off somewhat in the second quarter – UFV’s lead was 33-29 at halftime – but the Spartans found some traction in the third and led by as many as four points before the Cascades caught fire late. Along with the offensive explosion, UFV held TWU scoreless for the first five minutes of the fourth quarter.

“To start the game, I was a little bit concerned – I don’t think we’re at the stage where we can really be in one of those run-and-gun type games,” Cascades head coach Al Tuchscherer said. “That’s not really sustainable for us. That was not the game we wanted to play. We settled down a little bit, and our D got better as the game wore on. But our offensive execution, we didn’t really find anything until late in the third quarter.”

In addition to her 23 points, Sartori racked up nine rebounds and five steals. Claggett chipped in with 14 points, while Sara Simovic notched 10 points and seven assists. Tuchscherer also praised the play of rookie guard Amanda Thompson, who was “fantastic” defensively off the bench in the coach’s estimation.

Jessie Brown paced the Spartans with 13 points, and Gordon scored 12.

“I’m not really sure why we couldn’t play D early – maybe just getting caught up in playing a crosstown rival with a lot of familiar faces,” Tuchscherer said. “We’re a long ways away offensively, and that shows every game. Tonight, luckily we ended up finding something late in the game that allowed us to go on a little bit of a run. Obviously it was a pretty close game – I think the score kind of flatters us a little bit.”

Men’s Basketball: Spartans stage late rally, edge Cascades in OT

The Trinity Western Spartans erased a six-point deficit in the final two minutes of regulation and went on to defeat the University of the Fraser Valley Cascades 90-82 in overtime on Friday evening at the Envision Athletic Centre.

In a game of wild momentum swings, it was the Spartans who had the final surge – they finished the game on an 18-4 run, encompassing the last minute-plus of the fourth quarter and OT.

UFV (1-2) and TWU (2-1) renew hostilities on Saturday evening at the Langley Events Centre (7 p.m. tip-off, webcast at canadawest.tv).

“Trinity played really well,” Cascades head coach Adam Friesen said. “They out-worked us, out-competed us. That’s never a good feeling, but it’s reality. We’ve got to try to fix those things for tomorrow.”

The Cascades had a solid start, reeling off an 11-0 run midway through the first quarter to go up 17-11. But the Spartans took over shortly thereafter, going on a 12-0 run of their own to take a 30-21 lead. The visitors would lead by as many as 13 points in the second quarter, and took a 44-35 advantage into halftime.

The Cascades opened the third quarter on fire, outscoring the Spartans 17-2 over the first five minutes of the frame to seize a 52-46 lead. They maintained a lead throughout the fourth, and were up 78-72 after Mark Johnson’s layup off an assist from Vijay Dhillon with just under two minutes left in regulation.

But on the ensuing possession, UFV lost track of Spartans guard Max Viitala, and he made a wide-open three-pointer from the right wing to cut the deficit to three. After Dhillon missed a trey of his own, Pogos Trunyan corralled a long rebound and raced down the floor for a layup, plus the foul. He converted the old-fashioned three-point play to tie the game with 1:14 left.

Neither team was able to score again in regulation, and UFV forward Nav Bains had a 10-foot fadeaway jumper go off the back iron at the buzzer.

The Spartans pulled away in OT, scoring the final eight points of the extra session to secure their second win in conference play. That’s one more than they had all of last season, when they finished 1-19.

Trunyan paced the Spartans with 20 points, while Viitala (18 points), Tyus Allen (15), Tee Maberry (11) and Vartan Tanielian (11) also scored in double figures.

Johnson’s play was a bright spot for UFV. One year to the day after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) that cost him nearly the entire 2015-16 season, the third-year forward from Palm Springs, Calif. racked up a game-high 28 points (11-of-12 shooting from the field) and 13 rebounds.

Manny Dulay (17 points, 12 assists), Nav Bains (18 points, nine rebounds) and Vijay Dhillon (13 points) also chipped in offensively for the Cascades.

“My knee feels better the more I play,” Johnson noted. “This game, I just felt comfortable. I wasn’t thinking about my knee – I was just playing my game. That’s the biggest thing.

“It felt good (to play well) – I just wish we came out with the W. But we’ll come out tomorrow more aggressive.”

Women’s Volleyball: Royals rally past Cascades

The University of the Fraser Valley women’s volleyball team had the No. 5-ranked team in the nation on the ropes, but the Douglas Royals used an epic second-set comeback as a springboard for a four-set victory on Friday evening at the Envision Athletic Centre North Gym.

The Cascades claimed the first set 25-18 and were up 24-21 in the second, but the Royals reeled off six of the next seven points to win 27-25. They rolled from there, taking the next two sets by scores of 25-19 and 25-23.

UFV (2-6) and Douglas (6-1) have a rematch set for Saturday evening at 5 p.m. at the Envision Athletic Centre South Gym.

“We didn’t do it when we needed to,” Cascades head coach Mike Gilray summarized. “Anybody can play before game point – you’ve got to want to be able to put it away.

“I think people let it (the ending to the second set) affect how they were going to play the rest of the game. We played safe and afraid to make errors the rest of the match, and we lost because of it. We had total control of the game.”

Left sides Kim Bauder (11 kills) and Rachel Funk (10 kills) paced the Cascades’ offence, while libero Amy Davidson (23 digs) and Bauder (19 digs) had prolific passing performances.

“You’re not going to win in this league playing safe,” Gilray reiterated. “We were afraid to make errors and afraid to lose, and that’s exactly what we did – we made errors and we lost.”

Men’s Volleyball: Cascades knock off Royals in four sets

In a clash of nationally ranked men’s volleyball teams, the University of the Fraser Valley Cascades fashioned an impressive four-set triumph over the Douglas Royals on Friday evening.

The Cascades made their debut in the CCAA national rankings this week, checking in at No. 12, and they validated that billing – and made a case to move up – by knocking off a higher-ranked foe in the No. 8 Royals. Set scores were 25-23, 23-25, 25-20 and 25-22.

Cascades head coach Kyle Donen termed it “a weird one,” and for good reason. In the first set, the Royals surged ahead before the Cascades clawed their way back to win, and it was the opposite situation in the second – UFV was up big early, but left the door open for a Douglas comeback.

“Every set kind of went that way, except the last one,” Donen noted with a wry chuckle. “We were able to hold onto our lead and finish the game off at the right time.

“We had a bit of that killer instinct towards the end. When we needed to get big points, we were able to get them. At the end of the day, we were able to finish them off and we feel good about that. Hopefully we can carry it into tomorrow and be even better.”

Friday marked the Cascades’ fifth straight home victory to start the season, and they improved to 6-2 overall to tighten their grip on second place in the PACWEST. The Royals (4-3) sit third. The two teams clash again on Saturday at 7 p.m. in the Envision Athletic Centre South Gym.

Fourth-year left side Nick Bruce had a big night, racking up a team-high 16 kills and three aces. Fellow left side Ben Friesen (11 kills) and right side Joel Kleingeltink (nine kills) also chipped in offensively. Setter Adam Frederickson and middle Connor Pruim tied for team-high honours with four blocks apiece, and middle Dayton Pagliericci had three blocks of his own.

Donen also lauded the play of sophomore libero Evan Bell-Foley, who stepped into the starting lineup in place of an injured Isaiah Dahl.

“He did a good job,” Donen said of Bell-Foley. “Obviously you’re going to have some ups and downs, but most of it’s just getting comfortable on the floor. I expect with how he played tonight, he’ll be even better tomorrow.”

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