Volume 93, Issue 44

Wednesday, November 17, 1999


Duck flies high at CIAU finals

Western slams T.O. Open

Mustangs avoid volleyball scare

Erratic defence keeps volleyball match tight

Squash team missing key Mustangs

Hawks drown 'Stangs

Erratic defence keeps volleyball match tight

By Chad Thompson
Gazette Staff

The Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks had their wings clipped this weekend as the Western men's volleyball team beat them three games to one (25-22, 22-25, 27-25, 26-24).

Western head coach Joffre Ribout said the matches were tight because of a lack of intensity from Western's defence. "I think our inability to put pressure on their offence was key," he said. "Laurier is a team that doesn't give up. They are a veteran team who kept swinging."

He added despite the victory, a major weakness which plagued his team was a persistently inconsistent passing game. "Our passing definitely wasn't there, neither was our defensive intensity."

Western co-captain and right side Craig Rideout agreed with Ribout's comments on their ground game. "We are one of the top passing teams, but Friday we weren't passing well," he said. "We had our moments but we can play better."

Laurier head coach Paul Pavan said the key for his team was their ability to take anything Western threw at them. "We were able to dig a lot of balls against them. We were not intimidated by them."

However, Pavan was quick to point out the things his team could have done better. "We could have done a better job blocking. We threw the third game away, as we missed three serves giving Western the points – Western never earned those points. Game four was also tight, but we missed two passes and made it predictable where we were going [with the ball]."

Western's middles were a strong asset to the team, Rideout said, adding the squad's greatest strength was their determination to pull out the win.

"The strength of our team was our character," Ribout added. "I hope it was a learning experience and the guys learned a lesson about taking an opponent too lightly."

Despite the loss, Pavan said this game would aid his team down the road. "We don't have to compete with Western for a playoff spot," he said. "We played Western tough and we want to take that over when we play the rest of the division."

Both Ribout and Rideout said they were content with the team's performance up to this point. "It's nice to be undefeated," Ribout said. "We have a good veteran squad, but we hope to improve in practice to take on these younger teams."

"We want to win as many games as possible," Rideout said. "We have to have players one through 12 playing well to win a lot of games."

The Mustangs next game is tonight at Alumni Hall against the University of Guelph Gryphons at 8 p.m..

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Copyright The Gazette 1999