Jimmies men's vball open season with sweep over Kansas Wesleyan

Jan. 27—JAMESTOWN — The University of Jamestown forced Kansas Wesleyan University into 19 errors in a season-opening sweep (25-11, 25-20, 25-16) on Friday, Jan. 27, at Harold Newman Arena.

The Jimmies (1-0, 1-0) sprinted out to an early 12-5 lead before the Coyotes (0-1, 0-1) were able to cut into the deficit at 14-8. But the Jimmies went on a 3-1 run to make it 17-9, drawing a Coyotes timeout. The timeout did little to stop the Jimmies who finished the set on an 8-2 run, punctuated by an ace from Oguzhan Oguz to make it 25-11.

"I knew because of how young our roster is, I knew that they were probably a little bit nervous and there'd probably be a little bit nervous and there'd be some butterflies," Coyotes head coach Dustin Sahlmann said. "I felt like they showed that in set one. I felt like in set two and set three, they settled into their own a little bit better."

The second set was more competitive than the first as the Coyotes opened on a 3-1 run before the Jimmies fought back to take an 8-5 lead. The Coyotes cut into the lead at 11-10 but the Jimmies responded with a run to push the lead out to 17-12. During that run, the Jimmies' Derek Correa had four assists, part of a 34-assist performance for the senior.

"They did a really good job of playing great defense and we had some errors that didn't help on the serving game," Jimmies head coach Travers Cox said. "....That's the conundrum of the serving where when you're hitting them well you look good when you're hitting them into the net you don't look so good anymore."

The Jimmies opened the third set on a 3-0 run before the Coyotes fought back to cut the deficit to 9-7. The Jimmies' Ever Cancel got a kill to make it 10-7, starting a 7-2 run to take a 17-9 lead. The closest the Coyotes would get from there was 21-15 before the Jimmies put the match away.

During the win, the Jimmies had multiple smashes for kills which Cox said was a deliberate action from his team.

"We're going to be trying that with every team we play to try to get on our serve game because at this level that's what wins matches," Cox said. "If you're taking teams and getting them out of system.. you're right there with anybody. If they can run perfect-perfect pass it causes problems because then they got anybody to set. So, we're going to be challenging teams all year long with the serve and pass game."

During the third set, there was a stretch of five service errors in six points as the Jimmies' lead went to 21-14.

The Jimmies are back in action at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 28, when they face Central Christian University.

"I think this is good for us. This is a good way to build conditioning and mental fatigue," Jimmies outside hitter Downey Huynh said. "I think it's important that we can play these back-to-backs especially if we go play in the playoffs or go to nationals. The last two years we went to nationals, you play a bunch of back-to-backs, some teams even play two to three games in one day. So, I think it's important doing these back-to-backs that we can stay fresh and train ourselves to be fresh in these situations."

KWU 0, UJ 3

KWU: 11 20 16 — 0

UJ: 25 25 25 — 3

Kills leaders:

KWU: Jalen Watt 6, Justin Burras 6, Adam Zielinski 3

UJ: Oguzhan Oguz 13, Downey Huynh 9, Caylor Cox 9, Ever Cancel 4

Assists leaders:

KWU: Marcus Taylor 15, Hung Ngyuen 2

UJ: Derek Correa 34, Cox 1

Aces leaders:

KWU: Taylor 1

UJ: Oguz 2, Jaden Gaalema 2, Cox 1, Adam Lopata 1