The UBC Okanagan Heat basketball and volleyball teams were swept to start 2019, opening the new year with a combined eight losses over the weekend.
The men’s and women’s basketball teams both lost twice in Vancouver against the rival UBC Thunderbirds, while the men’s and women’s volleyball teams each dropped a pair of home decisions to the University of Calgary Dinos.
Triston Matthews finished with a double-double and Jarrett Larsen set a new career high for the Heat, but the No. 4 team in the country, the host T-Birds, took the victory 101-66 on Saturday after scoring a 100-29 blowout in Friday’s opener.
On Saturday, Matthews had 15 points and 10 boards, while Larsen poured in 11 points on six shot attempts in his second consecutive start.
Similar to Friday night, it was the second quarter that did in the Heat as they trailed by just nine after the opening 10 minutes but were outscored 41-17 in the second.
It was the 10th straight win for the No. 4 T-Birds, who were led by fourth-year guard Jadon Cohee’s game-high 22 points.
Kelowna product Grant Shephard and Mason Bourcier each registered double-doubles, with Shephard racking up 17 points and 10 rebounds, while Bourcier scored 16 points and dished out a game-high 10 assists.
Shephard led the way for the T-Birds on Friday, finishing with a game-high 19 points on just 10 shot attempts. He was one of six players to score in double-figures for UBC.
Matthews and Philip Okanlawon both had 10 points for the Heat in that lopsided loss.
UBC improved to 11-1 on the season with the sweep, while UBCO fell to 5-9 and have now lost eight of their last nine games.
This weekend, the Heat are on the road again for back-to-back games at the University of Regina.
Sadie Beers produced a career-high 16 points to go with five rebounds and four assists, but it wouldn’t be enough as the Thunderbirds prevailed over the Heat 87-57 on Saturday.
UBC improved its winning streak to a season-high five games and are now 8-4 on the Canada West season, while the Heat dropped to 0-14 with the loss and are still seeking their first win of the campaign. UBCO will now travel to Regina for a pair of games this weekend.
Against UBC, the Heat closed out the first half on a high with a buzzer-beating 3-pointer by Vanessa Botteselle, but the T-Birds held a 15-point advantage, 41-26, at the break.
The Heat were limited to just 13 points in the final quarter.
Jordan Korol finished with a double-double for UBCO thanks to 12 points and 12 rebounds.
Keylyn Filewich led the T-Birds with a career-high 32 points.
On Friday, UBCO senior guard Botteselle put forth another superb performance with a career-high 29 points, but UBC used a big third quarter to capture the 69-51 win.
The No. 2-ranked Calgary Dinos showed why they are one of the top teams in the country on Saturday night, taking care of business against the host UBCO Heat in three sets.
The Dinos got off to quick starts, taking big leads into the media timeout in every frame. UBCO was unable to mount any sort of comeback in any of the sets, dropping their second straight to the Dinos.
Aidan Lea had four kills to go with four blocks and two service aces for the Heat, while Jade Bussard had three kills and a team-high eight digs.
In the first set, which Calgary won 25-13, the Dinos’ offence was nearly unstoppable with 15 kills and just one error on 20 total attacks.
The second set saw the Dinos take a 9-3 lead en route to a 25-14 win, while the third set proved the closest with the Heat falling 25-15 after trailing 16-7.
The Heat put up a better fight on Friday, taking the Dinos to four sets in defeat.
The teams split the opening two sets, but the Dinos came on strong in capturing the third and fourth sets 25-17 and 25-18.
It was all visitors to start that match as Calgary took the opening set 25-11. But in an extremely exciting and closely contested second stanza, neither team had more then a three-point advantage all set long.
After Calgary held a 20-18 lead, the Heat found their rhythm and scored four of the next five points to take the lead at 22-21. A service error from the Heat tied things up, but UBCO scored the final three points — including two Ann Richards’ kills from the right side to prevail 25-22.
Rookie outside hitter Sydney Grills had 12 kills for the Heat, while Richards had 10 put-aways to go with three service aces.
The Dinos proved too strong, though, improving to 12-2 with their road sweep over UBCO.
The Heat (2-12) hit the road this weekend to face the Manitoba Bisons (6-8). UBCO is trying to avoid missing the playoffs for the first time since the 2011-12 season.
Eli Risso turned back the clock on Saturday night as he switched from libero to setter and it almost paid off for the Heat, but they fell in three sets to the visiting Calgary Dinos.
After dropping the opening two sets, the Heat had a huge opportunity to keep the match alive as they held a 20-14 advantage in the third but were unable to close the deal in eventually falling 27-25.
Risso finished with 25 assists for UBCO and did a great job distributing the ball to his attackers.
Max Heppell had 11 kills for the Heat to lead all attackers, while Devon Cote had nine kills and Denham O’Reilly stuffed the stat-sheet with eight kills, seven digs, four blocks, and two aces.
On Friday, transfer students Brennan Goski and Matt Aubrey finished with eight kills each, but the Dinos topped the Heat in three sets again.
In his first Canada West match at libero, Cote finished with a team-high 12 digs for the Heat, while Risso took over the setting duties and finished with 19 assists in the losing effort.
Calgary improved to 5-7 with the sweep as the Dinos look to make a push towards the post-season, while the Heat dropped to 0-14 and will continue to pursue their first win this weekend when UBCO travels for two games against the Manitoba Bisons (4-8).
The Heat also wrapped up their ‘Inn From the Cold’ clothing drive on the weekend, which was deemed hugely successful.