June 18th, 2024

Clippers serve Kodiaks a sweep

By Dale Woodard on February 11, 2022.

The Lethbridge College Kodiaks women’s volleyball team is looking for a mental reset, and with a highly-ranked opponent up next, no less.

The Kodiaks were swept 3-0 (25-17, 25-18, 25-14) by the Briercrest Clippers in Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference play Thursday night at the Val Matteotti Gymnasium.

The loss is the Kodiaks’ second in a row following a 3-0 setback to the SAIT Trojans Sunday in Calgary that puts Lethbridge at 8-5, still good for second place in the ACAC South, but two points up on the Clippers, who are now 7-4 with the win.

The Kodiaks now seek to bounce back quickly with the undefeated and ACAC-leading Red Deer Polytechnic Queens (15-0) paying a visit to the Val Matteotti Gymnasium Saturday afternoon.

On Thursday night, the Clippers grabbed the first set and took control of the next two on their way to the win.

“What I said to the girls was it’s as frustrating and comforting knowing we really beat ourselves,” said Kodiaks head coach Anna Schwark. “We had zero confidence and therefore our serve pass ability was almost non-existent. We didn’t trust ourselves and I don’t think we trusted the person next to us, either. So we have a lot of work to do (today) in practice getting ready for Red Deer, just having that confidence, that serve receive line and also trusting our defensive system, too. It wasn’t there. We definitely didn’t look like the team we were the last few days at practice.”

Mack Lewicki led the Kodiaks with eight kills and four digs, while Eryka Woods contributed with seven kills and Jamie Brown had six kills and eight digs.

Aideena Wickstrom and Elyse Doble each had eight digs.

Faith Buhler paced the Clippers with nine kills.

“Briercrest is a good team and they’re always very intelligent and they’re always very big,” said Schwark. “It’s not a team you want to take a night off from, especially now when I feel we really have the potential to be beating them.”

The Kodiaks will be in Caronport, Sask for the rematch Feb. 18-19 to wrap up the regular season.

“It’s definitely frustrating, but at the same time we have to be optimistic and just think it’s in our hands (and) if we can figure out that mental game, we have a chance to hopefully take a win or two off of them in their gym in a couple weeks,” said Schwark.

In the meantime, the powerhouse Queens – currently ranked second in the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association – beckon on Saturday. Game time is 2 p.m.

“It’s definitely going to be fun,” said Schwark. “We know Red Deer is first in the league for a reason. They’re extremely confident and they’re so clean. They take risks when it’s necessary and it really pays off for them. For us, we know the battle is going to be even tougher on Saturday. So it’s just the turnaround of getting in the gym (today) and working on that serve pass and maybe trying to be a little bit more aggressive on our serves as well so we can maybe get Red Deer out of system more than we did with Briercrest.

“I think we know it’s going to be a battle and quite honestly, I’m not expecting a win, I’m expecting to come out of that one feeling really good and knowing we were beat by a better team and we didn’t beat ourselves.”

The Kodiaks and Clippers men’s teams were playing in the 8 p.m. game Thursday night.

A score was unavailable at press time.

The Kodiaks women’s basketball team hits the road for their only game of the weekend on Saturday as they head to Caronport to face the Clippers.

After a 2-0 showing last weekend against the St. Mary’s Lightning that extends their winning streak to seven games and improves them to 11-2 and first in the ACAC South, the Kodiaks men’s basketball team is off this weekend after having their game at Briercrest postponed due to COVID concerns.

The Kodiaks women’s team looks to rebound after an 0-2 weekend against the ACAC South Division-leading St. Mary Lightning that now puts Lethbridge at 10-3.

They’ll face the 2-10 Clippers on Saturday.

On Saturday in Calgary, the Kodiaks battled back to tie the game in the final minute but fell victim to a game-winning buzzer beater from the Lighting to take the loss.

Kirsten Barwegen and rookie Courtney Deemter lead the Kodiaks in scoring and are top-five in the conference in points per game.

Barwegen is also fourth in the conference in rebounds per game, averaging 10.8.

Fans are permitted to attend Kodiaks’ volleyball home games this weekend.

Restrictions remain in place, including limited capacity and a masking policy, but food and drink will be allowed inside the Val Matteotti Gymnasium.

Game time Saturday is 2 p.m. for the women’s game and 4 p.m. for the men.

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