Brent Mutis, CapU Sport Information & Compliance Officer
Jenson Yuen registered a career-high 33 assists, setting up eight teammates for multiple kills as the Capilano Blues men's volleyball team earned a 3-0 win over the visiting Columbia Bible College (CBC) Bearcats.
Yuen, who started and handled the bulk of the setter's duties in place of Simon Friesen who was given a lighter workload, got Ben Friesen, Rafael Hilario and Jacob Hopkins involved early, setting each of them up for kills right out of the gate and quickly putting the Blues up 7-1 in the first set. He closed the set in style with a kill of his own, his first of the season.
After falling behind briefly to start the second set, the Blues regained the lead thanks to three aces in four points from Hilario. They appeared to take control of the set scoring six of eight points in one stretch to move into a 19-10 lead but the Bearcats staged a rally, getting back to within two points at 20-18.
A timeout called by Blues coach Dave Dooley allowed his side to regroup and make a couple of player substitutions. Capilano took four of the next five points coming out of the timeout and clinched the set on a CBC service error.
The teams traded points throughout most of the third set with neither side going on an extended run. The largest lead was the one had by the Blues at the end when they won the set and the match on a kill by Malachi McMullen, one of two kills on the night for the versatile second-year player.
On Thursday night at CBC, the Blues got a career-high nine kills and 10.5 points from Kyle Cook but Bearcats rallied with wins in sets three and four to extend the evening. The hosts played near perfect volleyball during their rally, making just two errors in the third and fourth sets. They also matched Capilano in kills in those sets. CBC's Noah Bouius recorded six kills himself in the third including the decisive point to extend the match.
The Blues were close to victory in the fourth, holding a 22-19 edge late before an ace from Nathan Rempel and a Capilano attack error evened the score. They went on to win it with a pair of kills from Jakob Boschmann.
Faced with a winner-take-all fifth set, the Blues and Bearcats traded points all the way to 13-13 when a kill by Hopkins and a mishandled pass by the Bearcats gave the game to the visitors.
Next up for the Blues is a road game Jan. 31 at the University of the Fraser Valley and a trip to Vancouver Island University Feb. 8 and 9. They close the regular season with a home-and-home set against Douglas College, concluding with Blues Seniors Night on Saturday, Feb. 15 at CapU's Centre for Sport and Wellness.