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Feb. 12, 2010
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The ninth-ranked Penn State men's volleyball team dealt Laval a 3-1 (30-27, 33-31, 25-30, 30-27) loss on Friday evening in the first of two exhibition matches. It was standing-room-only in South Gym. The Nittany Lions take on Laval again tomorrow at 7 p.m. in the Main Gym of Rec Hall.
Three Nittany Lions had double-digit kills with senior Max Lipsitz (Williamsville, N.Y.) leading the way with 18 on .600 hitting. Senior Will Price (Gaithersburg, Md.) tallied 17 and redshirt sophomore Joe Sunder (Greensburg, Pa.) had 16. Redshirt sophomore setter Edgardo Goas (San Juan, Puerto Rico) dished our 54 assists and junior libero Dennis Del Valle (Toa Alta, Puerto Rico) led the team with 13 digs. Freshman Ian Hendries (Cardiff, Calif.) had a match-high 11 total blocks.
Penn State attacked at a .308 clip, while the Rouge et Or finished the evening with a .314 attack percentage. Both teams had 70 kills apiece, but Laval outdug the Lions 40-32. Penn State had six aces to Laval's two and 14.0 total team blocks to Laval's 13.5.
Laval opened the match taking a 2-0 lead before a Lipsitz kill put PSU on the board. The Lions came within one point of the Rouge et Or on five occasions before tying it up at 7-7 on a Laval attack error. A PSU service error put Laval back in front, but kills by Price and Goas put the Lions ahead, 9-8. Laval knotted the score at 9-9 before a 5-1 PSU run had the Lions leading 14-10. Laval fought back to within two, 15-13, but a Price kill and a Laval attack error had Penn State leading 17-14 and the Rouge et Or calling a timeout. After the timeout, Laval came within one, 19-18, after kills from Jonathan Marcoux and Frederic Desbiens. However, a kill by Lipsitz and two from Sunder had PSU leading 22-19. The Rouge et Or managed to come within one of tying the set four more times, but back-to-back Price putdowns secured set one for the Lions, 30-27.
Penn State took the lead early in set two and led by six, 12-6, when Laval called its first timeout. Lipsitz increased the gap to seven, 13-6, on a kill, but five Penn State errors had Laval within three, 14-11. After a Penn State timeout, Laval managed to tie the set, 18-18, after a 7-3 run. The score tied four times before a Laval service error and a Sunder ace moved the Lions ahead by two, 25-23. A service error by both teams kept Penn State up by two, 26-24, until two straight kills by the Rouge et Or had the score tied at 27-27. A Laval service error gave PSU the lead, 29-28, but a Laval kill had the score tied at 29-29. Penn State took back the lead, twice more before a Sunder kill and a Laval attack error finally ended the set in Penn State's favor, 33-31.
Laval dominated the third set to start as the Rouge et Or jumped out to a 5-1 lead. The Lions would trail by as much as six points before staging an 8-2 run to tie the set at 13-13. Penn State took a slim 14-13 lead on a Laval attack error, but two Laval kills and two PSU attack errors had Laval back in front, 18-14. Kills from Price and Hendries had the Lions within two, 18-16, but a Laval kill and block had the Lions trailing by four, 20-16. Penn State worked back to within two, 22-20, but could not manage to take control and fell behind by five, 28-23. A Laval error and a Hendries kill had PSU within three, 28-25, but two consecutive kills by Laval sent the teams into a fourth set.
The fourth and final set was close from the get-go, but a 7-2 PSU run had the Lions leading by five, 13-8. After a Laval timeout, Penn State maintained control and had a 23-17 lead thanks to an accurate attack. Wolf had three kills, Price had two and Hendries and Lipsitz each put down one for the advantage. Laval called a second timeout to slow PSU's momentum. Two PSU errors and two Laval kills had the Rouge et Or within three, 24-21, after the break. Penn State called a timeout of its own and Sunder gave the Lions a bit more breathing room with a kill, 25-21. Laval managed to come within two points of the Nittany Lions on four occasions. Leading by one, 29-27, Goas set Wolf who put down a monster kill to win the set, 30-27, and secure the match for Penn State, 3-1.
For more information on the Penn State men's volleyball team, please visit www.GoPSUsports.com. The Penn State men's volleyball 2010 season is presented by Rockvale Outlets and The Outlets at Hershey.