Coming off a statement win over the Lakehead Thunderwolves on Friday, the Western Mustangs women’s volleyball team repeated their dominant performance against the Thunderwolves, once again shutting out Lakehead 3–0 on Saturday afternoon.
Although the 1,200 screaming London-area elementary school students that were in attendance during Friday’s matchup weren’t there, the Mustangs still managed to pull off their ninth win of the season during the Saturday rematch.
The Mustangs opened the first set with some back-and-forth action with the Thunderwolves, eventually pulling ahead to win the set 25-20, after being tied at 12 points each. Fifth-year King's University College student and veteran middle, Kelsey Veltman, had a four-kill performance in the first set, ultimately leading to her team-high 13 kills on the afternoon. The 12 assists from third-year health sciences student and top setter, Jessica Lam, also helped the Mustangs finish off the Thunderwolves in the first set. Lam led the team with a whopping 35 assists in the win.
The second set was highlighted by a come-from-behind set win by the Mustangs, who erased an early 10-point deficit to improve to 2–0 in the match.
“A lot of unforced errors” is how Mustangs coach Melissa Bartlett characterized the start of her squad’s second set.
However, Bartlett said that she was quite impressed in how her team was able to fight back for the lead despite what the scoreboard read.
“I was really happy that we were able to stay focused, one point at a time because it's so easy, volleyball is such a momentum sport, to kind of like totally unravel at that point in time,” said Bartlett. “It was good to practice that type of situation.”
The Mustangs eventually went on to take the second set, 25–19.
The Mustangs were sitting at 2–0 after two sets, looking to close out the match with one more set victory in the third set. The third and final set was featured by a multiple-dig performance by third-year kinesiology student, Melissa Langegger.
“If you watch Melissa play, she's such a great athlete so the stuff she does in the back row is a little unconventional, but those were tremendous,” said Bartlett in reference to Langegger’s third set performance. “That's like OUA play the week,” added Bartlett. “She had a great match offensively; serve, receive, and passing.”
Langegger also commented on her own play in the third set. The third-year outside hitter had a team-high 13 digs during the Saturday matchup.
“I think the first [dig], it was a really hard swing and I dug in, and after that I was just so focused in and then they just kept coming my way,” said Langegger when asked about how she was able to maintain composure in the third set. “I think I was just reading well and seeing where they're going to hit and just put all my effort into digging every single one of those balls.”
The Mustangs went on to take the third and final set in convincing fashion, 25–18, to finish off the match with the team’s third straight win.
With the weekend victory, the Mustangs improved to 9–5 on the season and are currently sitting in third place in the Ontario University Athletics West Division. The team will play host to the Windsor Lancers on Friday at Alumni Hall at 6 p.m.