The Nipissing University Lakers volleyball teams swept the Canadore Panthers in opening games of the annual Lakers Invitational Tournament.
The Lady Lakers defeated the Panthers 3-0 (25-13, 25-10, 25-15). The Lady Lakers on the strength of solid passing utilized their quick transition speed to neutralize the Panther defence.
“Our passing was the best I’ve seen in a couple of years,” said head coach John Jeffries.
“We were able to run at speed and the team executed really well. I was pleased with the teams’ effort and ability to maintain its intensity throughout the match.”
Megan Stacey led the Lakers offence with 12 kills, one stuff block and six aces while Carrie Baldwin added eight kills and four aces. The Lady Lakers will be facing two tough squads as they meet the Georgian Grizzlies at 9:00 am and the number ranked Cambrian Golden Shields at 10:15 am.
On the men’s side the Lakers beat the Panthers 3-0. (25-21, 25-21, 25-23) The Lakers began the match a little tentative but settle down in the middle of the match.
“For some reason we have a problem playing at home in front of our home crowd," said head coach Duane Culin.
“We need to improve our mindset and play every point likes its match point.”
First year players Andrew Bartle and Conrad Bedard put in some solid performance taking advantage of court time. The tournament format featured 12 substitutions instead of the normal six in OCAA play allowing the Lakers to utilize their bench.
The Lakers will be in tough in the morning as they face a scrappy Georgian team and 5th ranked Shields. “We will definitely have to pick up our play if we are to achieve our goal of a tournament victory.” added Culin. Eric Yung led the Lakers offense with 8 kills and two service aces while Seamus Strutt added eight kills.
Both Laker squads will be in action facing the Georgian Grizzlies at 9:00 a.m. The Lady Lakers will play their games at the Education Centre Gym while the men will play at the Robert J Surtees Athletic Centre.