WOLFVILLE, N.S. – The U SPORTS No. 8 ranked Dalhousie Tigers felt a sense of relief following a 3-2 match win against the host Acadia Axewomen.
With only one match loss this season, the Tigers found themselves fighting back after a convincing 25-16 first set win.
Tied at 10 in the first set, the Tigers swung the game around pulling out to a 19-11 lead off of two kills by each Courtney Baker (Bridgewater, N.S.) and Hannah Aldcorn (Calgary, Alta.) along with several Axewomen attack errors.
The Axewomen fought back in the closing of the first set but the Tigers eventually captured a 25-16 first set victory.
Acadia didn't give up in the second game, staying neck-to-neck with Dalhousie and never giving the Tigers more than a three-point lead at 18-15. A set error, an attack error and a service ace by Hannah Helm (Halifax, N.S.) tied the game at 18.
An eventual 25-23 Acadia win came from two kills by Lauryn Renzella (Stouffville, Ont.) and two bad sets by Dalhousie.
Tied at 1 set a piece, Acadia confidently stole the third set 25-21. Out to a 14-6 lead, the Axewomen allowed the Tigers to narrow the gap to a 16-14 Acadia lead. Acadia continued to handle the pressure and pushed out to a 21-14 advantage and an eventual 25-23 win by holding off a Tiger rally.
With Acadia leading 2-1 in sets, the Axewomen worked to a 11-7 lead only to have the defending AUS champions tie the fourth game at 14 off of kills by Emma Ciprick (Binscarth, Man.) and Courtney Baker. With no more than a margin of one point, Dalhousie edged the Axewomen 27-25 in a see-saw battle.
Up 5-1 in the final set, the Axewomen stalled, allowing the Tigers tie the game at 5 off of two kills and two Acadia attack errors. Dalhousie grabbed a 10-7 lead and never looked back for a 15-9 win and 3-2 match victory of the feisty Axewomen.
"Although today was our last match of the season, I'm very happy with how competitive we've been this past month", said Acadia head coach Michelle Wood. "Our team has been making gains that leaves me excited for the 2017-18 version of our Acadia Women's Volleyball program."
The Axewomen only lose one player to graduation. Fiona McGuinty (Ottawa, Ont.) was honoured prior to the start of today's game. "Fiona's presence will be missed, she was a big part of our program the past 4 years", noted Wood.
Amy Appleby was the Tigers' Subway Player of the Game with four kills, two service aces and four block assists. Laura Haworth (Waverly, N.S.) led Dalhousie with 12 kills and a hitting percentage of 0.286. Emma Ciprick posted 10 kills and teammate Courtney Baker added eight kills.
The first place Tigers (19-1) will prepare for the AUS championship March 3-4 at Saint Mary's, while the Axewomen have wrapped up the 2016-17 season with a 4-16 record and short of making post-season play.