Nathan Crosby, Sports Editor Ω
Kelly Asleson, Amanda Frayne and Vanessa Wiebe have played their last home games of their CIS careers, and they were games they will remember.
The WolfPack won its final home games of the year, beating up the 0-16 Saskatchewan Huskies 3-1 on Jan. 27 and 3-0 on Jan. 28.
TRU improves to 8-10 on the year, a school record for women’s volleyball wins, and now is in the thick of the Canada West playoff race.
It has been the best ever season for women’s volleyball at TRU, and one ‘Pack player in particular knows how hard it’s been over the years.
“It’s been a journey; a tough journey,” WolfPack team captain Kelly Asleson said.
It was hard for her to fight back the tears as her family and friends showered her with hugs, flowers and a framed orange jersey with number 16 and Asleson written in black letters.
“There have been ups and downs over the years,” she said.
“Just to be able to win games and have it really be fun again, it meant a lot to me.”
It was a remarkable weekend for Asleson.
Coming off a 15 kill performance against Brandon in mid-January, the Richmond native didn’t let the distraction of playing her final home game in front of friends and family hurt her weekend performance.
She totalled 17 kills and 17 digs and even took a hard smash off her jaw in the Jan. 28 game.
“The first two sets I really didn’t think about it at all,” she said.
“I took a moment in the third set to look around and said, ‘Wow, we can really win this in three.’”
Fifth-year outside hitter Amanda Frayne finished with 11 kills in 27 chances with two service aces, five digs and two block assists.
“It’s hard to think about this being the last time I’ll play at the TCC,” Frayne said.
Along with Asleson and Wiebe, Frayne is part of the first group of women to play their entire CIS careers at TRU.
“It’s amazing; obviously it hasn’t been done before. I’ve seen lots of players and coaches come and go, so to know that I’m one of the few that stuck it out feels really good.
“Kelly and I have been friends the whole way along. We played for each other when times got tough.
“It means a lot to share it with her (Asleson) and Vanessa,” she said.
Vanessa Wiebe was named Leader of the Pack in the Jan. 28 game for her clutch two kills in six chances plus a solo block and two block assists.
“It was really exciting because I spent six years watching the girls graduate and saw how exciting it is,” Wiebe said.
“To go out with a team that is really supportive and really close is awesome.”
The 8-10 WolfPack sit in eighth spot in the Canada West.
Seventh-place Brandon (8-8) loses the tiebreaker with TRU but has two games in hand.
Sixth-place Calgary lost two games to Alberta to fall to 8-8, but has two more games left than TRU.
The ‘Pack has two games left to make the playoffs.
Win or lose, it was a special moment in the TCC when three players got to see their hard work of the past years pay off.