Game recap by: Kirk Jessome
(Halifax, NS) – In game one of a back to back pair, the Dalhousie Tigers hosted the Laval Rouge et Or at the Dalplex on Friday as part of Alumni Weekend festivities. The Rouge et Or were able to get out to quick leads in sets and make the most of them, coming away with the 3-0 win.
The serving of the Rouge et Or was causing problems for the Tigers early in the match, helping push them in front to a quick 5-1 lead that forced a timeout from the Tigers.
Coming out of the timeout, the lead continued to grow for Laval, however, with Alexandre Obomsawin (Gatineau, QC) picking up back to back aces, and forcing errors from Tigers defenders. Just a few plays later as Obomsawin sent home his first kill of the match, it sent the teams into the technical break with the Rouge et Or leading 16-9.
The Tigers were unable to fight their way back in the back half of the set, as Obomsawin hammered home two more kills and Vincente Villalobos (Santiago, Chili) took the final swing to give Laval the 25-14 win in the first set.
The momentum carried over for the Rouge et Or in the second set, with Villalobos getting it done from both the service line and on the attack to give his team five of their first eight points of the set.
The Tigers were finally able to get their hitting going, with rookie Quinton Dowling (Waterloo, ON) picking up a few kills, but the Rouge et Or continued to stretch their lead into the technical timeout, up 16-7.
Once again making quick work of the set after the timeout, Ethan Ellison (Toronto, ON) picked up back to back aces, while Jack Daly (St. John's, NL) was brought in to close out the second set with back to back kills. With the 25-11 win in the set, the Rouge et Or took a commanding 2-0 lead in the match.
After a combined six serving errors in the first nine points of the set, the Tigers were able to settle back in and take their first lead of the match off the kill of Graham Schmuland (Calgary, AB).
The Tigers were able to carry that momentum to the technical timeout, with Schmuland getting in on a big block, and Quinton Dowling sent them into the break leading 16-10.
The Tigers attack stalled coming out of the break however, with errors piling up late in the set, the Rouge et Or were clawing their way back into it. Fighting back after being down 18-12, Laval took over the lead in the set at 23-22 off the kill of Villalobos.
Climbing all the way back in the set, Obomsawin finished off a long rally with a big kill to secure the 25-22 win in the set, and the 3-0 win in the match.
Jeffrey Walton (Sudbury, ON) led the Tigers attack in this one, finishing with 7 kills. Vincente Villalobos finished with 17 kills in the win for the Rouge et Or to earn the player of the game title.
Both teams will be back on the court tomorrow for the second match of the back to back.