No 10 Men's Volleyball Sprints Past the Scarlet Raiders
March 26, 2011
NEWARK, N.J. - The 10th-ranked Penn State men's volleyball team (19-5, 9-0 EIVA) remained undefeated in the EIVA with a 3-0 (25-22, 25-22, 28-26) victory at Rutgers-Newark Saturday night. The Nittany Lions have four more regular season matches before postseason play begins.
Sophomore Tom Comfort (Orchard Park, N.Y.) led the Nittany Lions with 13 kills, while freshman Jace Olsen (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) finished second on the team with seven. Redshirt junior Edgardo Goas (San Juan, Puerto Rico) dished out 30 assists, while senior libero Dennis Del Valle (Toa Alta, Puerto Rico) had a match-high 13 digs. Goas, senior Alan Mars (Rochester, N.Y.) and sophomore Nick Turko (Lewisberry, Pa.) each had one block.
The Nittany Lions attacked at a .276 clip and totaled 38 kills, six aces, 26 digs and 2.0 team blocks. Rutgers-Newark finished the match hitting .291 with 36 kills, four aces, 28 digs and 6.0 team blocks.
The first set started out close with neither team developing a substantial lead. It wasn't until midway through the set after back-to-back aces by Marcin Midura that the Scarlet Raiders grabbed a two-point edge, 15-13. Penn State called a timeout, but continued to trail until a 3-0 run with two Comfort kills had the score knotted at 19-19. The Scarlet Raiders called a timeout, but a RN attack error gave Penn State a slim 20-19 lead. The score tied twice more before a kill by redshirt junior Joe Sunder (Greensburg, Pa.) and a Rutgers-Newark attack error pushed PSU up by two, 23-21. Rutgers-Newark called a second timeout, but an ace by Turko had Penn State at set point, 25-21. Austin Pappas managed one final kill for the Raiders before Comfort closed out the set for PSU with a kill, 25-21.
The Scarlet Raiders jumped out to a 5-2 lead in the second frame and maintained control until a 3-0 run by PSU put the Nittany Lions ahead by one, 9-8. Grant Metheny tied it up at 9-9 with a kill, but a kill and an ace from Comfort gave the Lions some breathing room at 11-9. A 3-1 Scarlet Raider run tied the set at 12-12. The teams traded points with a Midura ace giving Rutgers-Newark a 16-15 lead. Penn State called a timeout and the score tied twice more before an RN error and a Mars ace moved Penn State back into the lead by two, 19-17. The Scarlet Raiders stayed with the Nittany Lions until kills from Comfort and Turko and a RN error had Penn State with a 23-21 lead as the set was coming to a close. Pappas pounded one final kill for the Raiders before a kill from junior Ryan Wolf (York, Pa.) and a Goas ace secured set two for PSU, 25-22.
The Nittany Lions took the early lead in the third stanza, 5-3. However, the Raiders were undeterred as they fought to tied the set at 6-6. The score tied four more times until an Olsen kill and a RN service error gave the Nittany Lions a two-point lead, 12-10. Through the middle of the set the neither team managed to develop enough momentum to take control. With the score knotted at 17-17, a 4-1 Rutgers-Newark run gave the Scarlet Raiders a 21-18 lead and had Penn State calling a timeout. Two kills by Olsen and a RN attack error pulled Penn State back in and tied the score at 21-21. Rutgers-Newark called a timeout and Pappas put the Raiders back in the lead, 22-21, with a kill. Penn State held the Raiders within reach tying the score five times but never managing to grab the lead. It wasn't until a Rutgers-Newark attack error that Penn State took a 27-26 lead. Turko stepped to the line at match-point and registered an ace to give Penn State a 28-26 third set win.
For more information on the Penn State men's volleyball team, please visit GoPSUsports.com. The Penn State men's volleyball 2011 season is presented by Rockvale Outlets and The Outlets at Hershey.