Western won the battles in a lot of statistical categories including out-hitting, out-blocking, and out-digging the Rams.
Ryerson trailed by six on two separate occasions in the first set but battled back to take their first lead since 1-0 at the 25-24 point. The Rams could not put the Mustangs away, however, and after several good rallies, Western emerged victorious on a Phil James (Ottawa, Ont.) block to take the set 28-26.
The Rams struggled offensively in the second, tallying just six kills to Western's 17. Mustangs outside attacker Garrett May (Scarborough, Ont.) took over with nine kills in the set to lead Western to a quick 25-14 win.
Ryerson gave away a lot of points on attack and service errors throughout the night which put them behind early and often. After the match, assistant coach Chris McLaughlin commented about their serving woes.
"It's something we talked about half way through the game and tried to correct it but unfortunately these things happen and we'll just have to work on it to get better for next week."
In the third set the Rams got out to an early five point lead at 8-3 but couldn't hold on as Western stormed back to take a four point lead at 17-13. Ryerson continued to battle as they tied things up at 17-17 but Western took eight of the last 11 points to secure a 25-20 set win.
When asked about his team's ability to claw their way back into the game, McLaughlin was happy with the performance, despite the loss.
"It's nice to see that we don't just fold or give up when we're down. It shows we have the fight and hopefully next time we can complete the comeback."
Alex Dawson (Scarborough, Ont.) finished with a team-high eight kills for the Rams. Marc Reardon (London, Ont.) had a strong game in the middle, posting six kills and two blocks. Libero Brian Battista Bettencourt (Azores, Portugal) finished with a team-high seven digs despite playing in just two of the three sets.
May finished with 17 kills on the night for Western while rookie Justin Scapinello (London, Ont.) added nine. Senior Luke Sim (Toronto) had a game-high four blocks, accounting for half of Western's total.
Ryerson is back in action next weekend as they travel to Kingston to take on the Queen's Gaels and RMC Paladins. Saturday's match against Queen's goes at 2:00 p.m. while Sunday's first serve is scheduled for 1:00 p.m.