NORTH BAY, ON: The Humber Hawks women's volleyball team started off their pre-season with two exciting exhibition games against the Nipissing Lakers in North Bay.
With a completely different roster filling the lineup and many new faces, Humber's hope of continuing their legacy and pushing for a national championship lives on.
The Hawks arrived in North Bay on Friday night where they were set to play Nipissing at 4. Humber came out, with minimal preparation on game play.
The hawks were back and forth with Nipissing during the first set, a few of the players being very tentative and hesitant on the court. The hawks performed on serve receive but lacked the aggressive serve that they are infamous for.
After getting more comfortable on the court with one another the Hawks stepped up their level of play when they started to gel.
However, they started too late, Humber falls to the Lakers 26-24 in the first set.
Fifth-year captain and middle for the Humber Hawks, Alley Newman said, "We were definitely nervous as a group, but that's to be expected. There's a ton of new people learning how to play together. We'll get it. I'm not worried".
Humber battled back in the second set, but could not capitalize on key moments in order to execute.
Lakers take set two 25-20.
Humber came out hot in the third set. Things were clicking and 5 consecutive points. Humber dominated the third set 25-19.
With the fourth set underway, Humber is determined to stay with the Lakers, and manage to pull ahead in a very tight game. Fourth set goes to 26-24 for Humber forcing a tie-breaker fifth set.
Lakers got ahead quickly in the fifth set, and although the Hawks pulled together, it was hard to play catch up. Humber goes down in the fifth set.
Rookie setter Gabie Miletic has experience playing at Windsor University says playing here she feels much more confident. "Compared to my first OUA game, I had a lot less nerves. It's just easier to know that there's no point in having nerves like that."
Miletic adds that when the team was scrambling and out of system, they didn't scramble well, and she hopes that in Saturday's match the squad would capitalize on this.
With a restful night and a positional practice in the morning, Humber takes the court again at 4 on Saturday to play the Lakers for some redemption.
Day 2, Game 2, a 4 set sweep for the Hawks.
Right from the warm-up it was noticeable that the energy was different in today's match. The team was more vocal and comfortable in their environment, and with each other as a group.
Humber passed well in the first set of the game and first-year right side, Julia Watson was very successful with 4 service aces.
"We felt more like a team, it was fun on the court," she said. "It was fun to play."
Humber continued this throughout the match and stayed ahead.
"The only time we remotely took our foot off the gas was during the third set when we let them get on a run, other than that it was a pretty consistent game," said head coach Chris Wilkins.
The Hawks stayed together and pushed through difficult situations and managed to scramble better than yesterday which allowed them to transition faster and more efficiently. Mililetic said, "everyone trusted each other's roles today".
The final scores of the match were:
The Hawks hit the road again to play Western on September 23, 2016.