(FREDERICTON, NB) The Dalhousie Tigers took over possession of first place in the Atlantic University Sport men's volleyball standings with a 3-2 win over the UNB Varsity Reds, Friday night.
The Tigers won 25-18, 22-25, 25-14, 14-25 and 15-13.
Kristen O'Brien(Truro, NS) led the Tigers with 23 kills, while Adam Sandesson(Lower Truro, NS) had 26 digs.
Tristen Burridge(Fort St. John, BC) led the Varsity Reds with 16 kills and 15 digs.
Dal took immediate control of the first set, establishing a 6-1 lead quickly, forcing UNB to call an early time out.
The teams traded points after that, before the Tigers built leads of 15-7 and 17-10 on their way to the 25-18 win.
The Varisty Reds bounced back in an exciting second set.
A back-and-forth battle saw UNB build leads of 15-11 and 20-15 before the Tigers rallied.
Dal tied the set at 20, at 21, and at 22.
Then, with Kent Doucette(Tignish, PE) serving, the VReds reeled off four straight points, two off Burridge kills, to win 25-22.
A pair of 4-0 runs in the third set allowed Dal to go up 2-1.
In the fourth set, with rookie Brad Stewart(Wolfville, NS) serving, UNB scored the final six points of the set to take a 25-14 win.
The fifth set was a see-saw fight, with the Tigers emerging 15-13 victors.
"We were horrible," said Varsity Reds head coach Dan McMorran. "We were absolutely horrible. We were not up to the task tonight."
"It was an undisciplined effort on our part, in every aspect of the game… the exception of the bright spot in our first year kid(Brad Stewart)," said McMorran.
O"Brien, named the Subway Player of the Game, was elated following the five set match.
"It was up and down all game," he said. "You didn't know what way it was going to go, and it went right down to the wire. Those are the most fun games to play in."
After losing to UNB in last season's AUS championship, O'Brien admits the Tigers arrived in Fredericton with a bit of a chip on their shoulder.
"You always want to beat these guys. They're the only other team in the conference that we contend with," said O'Brien.
Burridge admits the Varsity Reds might've beaten themselves.
"We missed a lot of serves and I think that pushed it to the fifth set," he said. "We played quite well in the fourth set, we didn't make as many errors, but we just kind of made it hard on ourselves the whole match."
The two teams meet against on Saturday afternoon.
"We'll definitely bring it harder, to start, for sure," said Burridge.