Heat advance to CCAA final

The No. 1 ranked UBC Okanagan Heat used solid team defence to ground the fifth seeded Humber College Hawks of Toronto in four sets (23-25, 25-18, 25-20, 25-22) in semifinal action at the CCAA Championships Friday night in Sherbrooke, Que.

Vernon’s Preston Tucker, named CCAA Male Volleyball Player of Year this week, was the Player of the Match for his brilliant ball distribution at setter.

His favourite recipient, Nate Speijer, led the Heat with a game-high 19 kills while Greg Niemantsverdriet, another Vernon product, finished with 12 kills.

The defending champion Heat faced the Columbia Bible College Bearcats of Abbotsford in the gold-medal game Saturday.

The Bearcats took down the second seeded Briercrest Clippers of Caronport, Sask. in five sets (17-25, 25-14, 25-22, 18-25, 15-8) in the other Friday semifinal.

The Heat have beaten Bearcats three times this year already, including a four-set victory two weeks ago at the B.C. final in Kelowna.

In women’s CCAA volleyball action in Saint John, the No. 1 Heat fell short of making it a three-peat after they fell 3-2 (17-25, 17-25, 26-24, 25-20, 15-11) to the Vancouver Island University Mariners of Nanaimo in semifinal play Friday night.

The Mariners rallied from a 2-0 deficit. Myrte Schön was named the Heat’s player of the match.

The tangled with Humber College Saturday morning, the winner advancing to the bronze-medal later that day.