Bearcats knock off Cascades in three sets

The University of the Fraser Valley women’s volleyball team dropped a three-set decision to the Columbia Bible College Bearcats in their regular-season home finale on Friday.

The Bearcats controlled the match throughout, prevailing by scores of 25-18, 25-19 and 25-16 to improve to 10-13, good for fifth place in the PACWEST. The CCAA No. 7-ranked Cascades fell to 13-10, tied for third with the Capilano Blues.

Cascades fifth-year standout Monique Huber played her last regular-season home game on Friday and was honoured in a post-game ceremony.

The two teams wrap up the regular season on Saturday, as the Bearcats host the back end of the home-and-home set (women 5 p.m., men 7 p.m., Columbia Place). Both the UFV and CBC women’s teams are already assured of advancing to the PACWEST championships, which will be hosted by the Cascades next week (Feb. 22-24).

“Our key things we’ve been really peaking in, they kind of all let us down today,” Cascades head coach Mike Gilray said, analyzing Friday’s loss. “Our serving and our passing were probably the toughest. I don’t want to take anything away from CBC – they played a great match, they served extremely tough, and they defended us really well. But we can’t be giving up that many points with unforced errors on our side.”

After dropping the first two sets, the Cascades gave up a four-point run in the early stages of the third to fall behind 9-4, and the Bearcats pushed the advantage to 15-8. UFV responded with a four-point run of their own to get back to within 15-12, threatening to extend the match if they could keep the rally going. But CBC re-assumed control at that point, scoring 10 of the next 14 points to end the match in decisive fashion.

“We’ve said throughout the year, there’s no easy games in PACWEST,” Gilray noted. “It doesn’t matter, one through seven. Here’s the fifth-place team, and they thump us 3-0. They were in control of the match, and that’s the quality of our league.”

The Cascades honoured fifth-year middle Monique Huber in a post-game Senior Night ceremony, and Gilray lauded her contributions both on the court and to the program’s culture.

“It’s great to be able to honour her,” Gilray said. “She’s been a captain here, and there’s just so much she brings as a teammate. She’s helped build the depth of our middles, she’s helped build the consistency of this team, she’s helped build the quality of volleyball that’s being played in our gym every practice.”

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The University of the Fraser Valley is situated on the unceded traditional territory of the Stó:lō peoples. The Stó:lō have an intrinsic relationship with what they refer to as S’olh Temexw (Our Sacred Land); therefore, we express our gratitude and respect for the honour of living and working in this territory.

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