SASKATOON — Ethan Duncan is finally back in the Winnipeg Wesmen lineup, and he was a big part of a big win Saturday night.
Duncan, who missed the first 14 Canada West conference matches due to injury, had a career-high 16 kills, seven digs and eight block assists in just his second match back in uniform and helped lift the Wesmen men's volleyball team to a 3-1 (18-25, 25-17, 25-23, 26-24) win over the Saskatchewan Huskies.
Duncan had a match- and career-high 21.0 points Saturday after making his return to the lineup Friday.
The win improved the Wesmen record to 9-7 on the season and kept them in sole possession of fifth place in the Canada West. The top eight teams make the post-season and the top four will host the first round. The Wesmen moved to four points back of fourth-place Brandon, which lost to Calgary on Saturday for its fourth straight defeat.
Daniel Thiessen added 10 kills for the Wesmen, who hit .216 for the match and were better than .200 in each of the three sets they won after going .000 in the first.
The Wesmen held Saskatchewan to .032 in the second after the Huskies put up a .381 in the first. U of S hit .204 for the night.
Up 2-1 in sets, the Wesmen trailed 18-15 in the fourth as the Huskies attempted to force a fifth. But three straight kills — from Thiessen, Nigel Nielsen and Mikael Clegg — tied the set up at 18. After a pair of side-out points, the Huskies won back-to-back points to go up 21-19. From there, kills by Duncan and Keegan Teetaert, with a Saskatchewan error mixed in, gave the Wesmen the lead at 22-21.
The Wesmen closed things out at 24-24 thanks to two attack errors from Cole Burkart, who had a match-high 18 kills to lead the Huskies (8-8).
The Wesmen will host the MacEwan Griffins for a pair of matches at the Duckworth Centre Friday and Saturday.