VIU takes step up in competition

Vancouver Island University’s women’s volleyball team spent the last couple of weeks playing, and winning, away from home. And they saved potentially two of the best matches for their home gym.

The M’s host the Columbia Bible College Bearcats on Friday and Saturday (Jan. 25-26) before playing the first-placed Fraser Valley Cascades the following weekend on the road.

“The challenge all season long has been to stay motivated against teams that are a step below us,” said Shane Hyde, coach of the VIU women. “Now we’re going into a stretch where we’re playing CBC and UFV, two teams that are in the same ballpark as us. We kind of look at it as a prelim to [playoffs].”

VIU (14-2) split two matches with CBC (10-6) earlier in the season. This time the M’s will try make things harder on the Bearcats’ all-star players and take advantage of a perceived lack of depth on that team.

“In that game that we lost to them in three straight, we were more focused on their side of the court and kind of got frazzled by that,” said Marlie Temple, VIU veteran. “We’re a lot better prepared this time around and excited to be playing back home and in our gym.”

GAME ON … Friday’s match is at 6 p.m. and Saturday’s rematch is at 1 p.m. VIU’s men’s volleyball team faces CBC on Friday at 8 p.m. and Saturday at 3 p.m. … Friday’s game is retro night at the VIU gym; fans are encouraged to dress up accordingly.

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