Massive blocks are key
to men's volleyball win over Laurier
By James Gibson
CAN DO IT, PUT YOUR BACK IN TO IT. Peter Sidler of the Mustangs’ men’s
volleyball team winds up during their game against the Laurier
Golden Hawks. The men won three sets to zero.
The Western’s men’s volleyball team swept their way
to victory Saturday night, crushing the visiting Laurier Golden
Hawks in three consecutive sets at Alumni Hall. Western served
the Hawks their ninth loss this season, punishing them 3-0 (25-14,
Some would say defeating a team that holds an 0-8 record may not
seem like much of a feat. On the other hand, a winless team always
has that little extra incentive to snag their first win.
In all three sets the Mustangs took immediate control of their
opponent, gaining the first point. Laurier failed to hold a lead
at any time, but did mount a few late rallies in the second and
third sets — however, they were quickly extinguished by the
Mustangs’ massive blocks.
The Mustangs completely dominated the Hawks in all three sets.
The team was in sync; everyone was working hard and chipping in
that little bit of extra effort. Laurier didn’t help their
cause by committing many unforced errors and failed blocks.
Mustangs’ right side Jeff Mattingly (a London native) posted
12 of those blocks on Saturday night, adding an impressive nine
“He usually shit-stands (blocks) at least 20 players [a
game] — he’s got those monstrous arms,” said
middle Brian Cram, about Mattingly’s play.
Mattingly is already showing leadership and dominance on the court.
Western head coach Jim Sage said he has a great deal of confidence
in him. “Jeff’s one of the hardest hitters in league.
If he’s on we will try and hit him as much as we can.”
Mustang captain and fourth-year veteran left side Peter Sidler
also had a solid game, posting nine kills and 12 blocks. The win
on Saturday leaves the team at an even 5-5 record, giving them
10 points in the Ontario University Athletics standings.
Western is currently in a three-way tie for fourth with Guelph
and Waterloo, trailing York, Windsor and Toronto, who each have
Saturday’s win against Laurier was a good boost to the Mustangs’ confidence
after they dropped a close road game last Wednesday to the Windsor
Laurier head coach Shayne White was given a yellow card at the
beginning of the second set after he and one of the officials exchanged
words following a Western point. The controversial point came off
a spike that seemed to paint the back-court line. While White may
not have had many nice words to say about the official, he did
not question Western’s play. “I think [Western] played
very well. I’m surprised that they are not doing better in