(FREDERICTON, NB) The UNB Reds fought hard but came up short in a five-set thriller, falling 3-2 to the Universite de Montreal Carabins on Saturday afternoon.
The Carabins won with scores of 28-26, 24-26, 17-25, 25-17 and 15-12.
The Reds got the jump on the Carabins in the first set, leading 8-5 early on.
Montreal would battle back to make it 15-12 and lead the back half of the set until UNB forced the first of three deuces.
The Reds would score the first two advantages at 25-24 and 26-25, but the Carabins would grab the third and capitalize to win the set 28-26 and go up 1-0 in the game.
The second set was even closer with neither team holding more than a two-point lead.
The Reds would find themselves up 24-22 with a chance to close out the set. However, the Carabins were resilient and forced the fourth deuce of the game.
The Reds would gain the advantage and did not let it go to waste, closing out the set 26-24 to tie the game 1-1.
UNB would carry their momentum into the third set where they led by as much as 10, winning 25-18 to go up 2-1 in the game.
"We struggled early, but the boys picked up their energy throughout the middle of the game. When our team is playing the way that we can play, it's at a very high level and it's hard to stop," said Reds middle-hitter Brad Stewart (Wolfville, NS).
Montreal would respond in the fourth, leading front to back to win the set 25-17.
The Reds would have a 10-8 lead in the fifth set only to have the Carabins battle back to tie it 11-11 and again at 12-12.
Montreal would finish on a 4-0 run to seal the victory 15-12.
"We are not as consistent as we should be and we need to execute down the stretch," said Stewart.
Youssef Baati (Montreal, QC) and Sebastien Lapensee (Gatineau, QC) led the Carabins with 14 kills each while Simon Bilodeau (Laval, QC) had 10 digs,
UNB falls to 4-10 on the season while Montreal improves to 12-3.
UNB is at home again next Friday, playing host to the Dalhousie Tigers. Game time is 7:30pm.
Montreal will also be at home next Friday when they play the Laval Rouge et Or.
RECAP BY: Jonathon James/for UNB Athletics
PHOTOS BY: James West/for UNB Athletics