SAO PAULO, Brazil – Trinity Western’s men’s volleyball team, representing Canada, earned a bronze medal at the inaugural FISU America Games, beating Mexico in a thrilling five-setter 21-25, 30-28, 19-25, 25-16, 15-13 Thursday at the Brazilian Paralympic Center.
Trailing 13-11 in the fifth set, the Spartans responded with a match-clinching 4-0 run that was sealed with back-to-back aces from legendary TWU setter Adam Schriemer (Winnipeg), who was the U SPORTS Player of the Year in 2017-18.
“The legacy of Schriemer continues,” said Spartans coach Ben Josephson.
The likes of Ben Lieuwen (Abbotsford, B.C.) and Jacob Kern (Edmonton) led the team from the outside, while setter Derek Epp (Saskatoon) was instrumental in guiding the offence during much of Thursday’s match, as he was throughout the tournament. Due to injuries, Schriemer was largely playing middle during the tournament.
“It was an unbelievable match from Ben Lieuwen,” Josephson said. “That was the best he played throughout the whole tournament. Then Jacob Kern was amazing again as he carried us all tournament long. And then Schriemer played middle until the second part of the game and then we went 6-2 at the end. Schriemer had kills left, middle and right and had blocks left, middle and right in the tournament. It was really neat.”
The Spartans opened the tournament with a 3-0 win over Colombia before losing in three sets to Argentina. A three-set loss to Brazil in the semifinals put the Spartans up against Mexico for third place.
The FISU America Games is a Pan American branch of the FISU World University Games.
This is the third time TWU has donned the Maple Leaf on an international stage. In 2012, the Spartans represented Canada at the U23 Pan American Cup, finishing fourth. In 2011, the team participated in the FIVB Club World Championship as Canada’s representative, finishing with one win from three matches, including a victory over Iranian professional side Paykan Tehran.
FISU America Games Schedule – Canada
July 22nd – Canada (TWU) 3 Colombia 0
July 24th – Argentina 3 Canada (TWU) 0
July 25th – Semifinal – Brazil 3 Canada (TWU) 0
July 26th – Bronze Medal Match – Canada (TWU) 3 Mexico 2
CANADA ROSTER FOR FISU AMERICA GAMES
Carter Bergen (Winnipeg)
Jesse Elser (Calgary)
Brodie Hofer (Langley, B.C.)
Ben Lieuwen (Abbotsford, B.C.)
Kaden Gamache (Abbotsford, B.C.)
Adam Schriemer (Winnipeg)
Jordan Schnitzer (Langley, B.C.)
Colton Loewen (Abbotsford, B.C.)
Aaron Boettcher (Surrey, B.C.)
Jacob Kern (Edmonton)
Jordie Koslowsky (Abbotsford, B.C.)
Derek Epp (Saskatoon)
Mike Grypma (Langley, B.C.)
About Spartan Athletics
As official members of U SPORTS, the Spartans currently compete in 10 sports in the Canada West conference, including women’s and men’s soccer, volleyball, basketball, cross country and track & field. TWU also competes in the British Columbia Intercollegiate Hockey League (BCIHL) in men’s hockey. Since TWU entered U SPORTS in 1999, the Spartans have won 11 U SPORTS team championships and 25 Canada West team championships.