No. 9 Nittany Lions Fall to No. 4 Cal State Northridge
April 11, 2010
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - The ninth-ranked Penn State men's volleyball team suffered a 3-0 (27-30, 24-30, 25-30) setback to fourth-ranked Cal State Northridge on Saturday, April 10. The Nittany Lions are back in action on Saturday, April 17 at EIVA foe George Mason. Match action is set to begin at 7 p.m.
Senior Will Price (Gaithersburg, Md.) had a match-high 19 kills, while redshirt sophomore Joe Sunder (Greensburg, Pa.) was second on the team with 11. Redshirt sophomore Edgardo Goas (San Juan, Puerto Rico) dished out 45 assists and junior Dennis Del Valle (Toa Alta, Puerto Rico) had 12 digs. Goas led the team with five total blocks.
Cal State Northridge registered a .336 attack percentage and held the Nittany Lions to .193. The Nittany Lions totaled 48 kills, three aces, 47 digs and 8.5 total team blocks. The Matadors recorded 49 kills, four aces, 31 digs and 14.5 team blocks.
Cal State Northridge drew first blood in the initial set. The Matadors took advantage of three early attack errors and service error from the Lions to build a 6-2 lead. However, a kills by senior Max Lipsitz (Williamsville, N.Y.) kick-started a Nittany Lion offense. Following a Cal State Northridge attack error, Price blasted a service ace to draw the Lions within one. Goas, Lipsitz, and Wolf combined for a block, which knotted the game at 6-6 before the Matadors burned a timeout.
A Price service error out of the timeout put Cal State Northridge back on top, but the Lions rattled off three of the next four points to reclaim the lead (11-8). Sophomore Ryan Wolf (York, Pa.) handed the Nittany Lions a 15-12 lead with a kill, but the Matadors had an answer. Cal State Northridge manufactured a 4-1 burst to tie the set at 16-16. From there, the set seesawed within a point until the Nittany Lions pushed their lead to 20-18 after an attack error from the Matadors. Kills from Price and Lipsitz put the Lions up 22-19 before the Matadors called their second timeout of the opening set. But the timeout proved to be a swing in momentum, as Cal State Northridge scored seven of the set's next eight points to claim a 25-23 advantage. The Lions would get as close as one, but the Matadors closed out the first with a 30-27 victory. Penn State managed just .095 hitting in the opening set.
The Matadors took a 7-2 lead to start set two and despite a CSUN error, a Matador kill had the gap at five, 8-3. A 4-0 run by the Lions forced a CSUN timeout. The break cut off the Lions' momentum and Cal State Northridge held on to at least a two-point lead until a 3-0 run by PSU had the score tied at 13-13. The score tied twice more before a PSU error and a CSUN block moved the Matadors ahead by two, 17-15. A CSUN service error brought Penn State within one, 17-16, but three straight points by the Matadors had CSUN leading by four, 20-16. Back-to-back Matador kills had CSUN leading by five, 22-17. The Nittany Lions fought back to within three, 26-23, on a Price kill and a solo stuff by Goas, but Penn State would manage just one additional point before the Matadors closed set two, 30-24.
CSUN wasted no time in the third set jumping out to a 4-1 lead. Three straight Nittany Lions kills had Penn State within one, 6-5. The Matadors lead grew once again to three, 8-5, but a Price kill and Goas ace had PSU back within one, 8-7. By midway through the frame, the Matadors were holding on to a two-point edge, 15-13, as kills by Goas, Lipsitz and Sunder kept CSUN from breaking away. Three errors by the Matadors would keep Penn State within two until three consecutive kills by Cal State had the Matadors leading, 20-16. A Lipsitz kill put the Lions within three, 20-17, but the Matadors put away two for a five-point advantage, 22-17. A Price kill and a joint stuff by Sunder and redshirt junior Alan Mars (Rochester, N.Y.) had the Lions trailing by only three, 23-20, but a 3-0 CSUN run had the Matadors racing towards match-point 27-21. A 4-2 run by Penn State, including two Lipsitz kills and one from Sunder, held the Matadors at match point, 29-25, albeit only momentarily. Cal State closed out the set, 30-25, after a PSU service error.
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.