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Wesmen will play for 3rd at Unruh Challenge

Ashleigh Laube returns a serve during a semifinal at the Unruh Realty Volleyball Challenge on Saturday. (David Larkins/Wesmen Athletics)
Ashleigh Laube returns a serve during a semifinal at the Unruh Realty Volleyball Challenge on Saturday. (David Larkins/Wesmen Athletics)

The Winnipeg Wesmen will play for third place at their own tournament following a loss to the Regina Cougars in a semifinal on Saturday.

The Wesmen women's volleyball team fell 3-0 (25-11, 25-10, 25-22) to the Cougars Saturday night and will face the Moncton Aigles Bleus in the third-place match Sunday at noon.

The result came after a Friday in which the Wesmen were perfect, going 2-0 while not dropping a set.

Saturday was different, however, as the Wesmen lost both matches and struggled to gain the consistency they seemed to have a day earlier.

"Our biggest thing with our team is mental and emotional toughness. (Head coach) Diane (Scott) always reminds us of that and I found we kind of broke down and gave a lot of gaps of points away, which we can't do," third-year middle blocker Jessica Friesen said. "They were blocking a lot of line on us, which was something they did very differently. (Friday) night we hit off hands the entire night, we just absolutely crushed that, but tonight it was very different."

VIDEO: Jess Friesen discusses Saturday's results

Ashleigh Laube and Emma Parker both had seven kills to lead the Wesmen, who will nevertheless have a chance to finish with an above-.500 record with a win over Moncton.

"Awesome Friday. Not so good Saturday, so just to kind of turn that around, that would be really good," Friesen said.

In the other semifinal, the Brandon Bobcats, who finished 2-1 and edged out Winnipeg on a tiebreaker to finish in first place, beat the Moncton Aigles Bleus 3-1 (24-26, 26-24, 25-14, 25-21).

Earlier in the day, the Wesmen suffered their first setback of the tournament, falling 3-1 (25-21, 17-25, 25-14, 25-17) to the Bobcats in the final round-robin match of the tournament.

Parker posted a double-double with 11 kills and 10 digs, and Laube led the Wesmen with 14 kills. Friesen added six kills.

Libero Madison Fyvie recorded a team-high 13 kills, while Laube and Kalena Schulz had seven each.

—#REPTHEW—