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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - No. 13 Penn State men's volleyball is set to square off against Saint Francis (Pa.) (4-5) Friday, Feb. 3 at 7:00 p.m. ET in Rec Hall. LIVE stats for all Penn State matches will be provided as well.
PENN STATE VS. SAINT FRANCIS (Pa.)
Saint Francis, led by head coach Mike Rumbaugh, enters conference play with a 4-5 overall record after splitting last week's doubleheader.
Friday's matchup against Penn State will be third time in the last four matches Saint Francis will play a ranked opponent.
Despite taking the first set against LBSU, SFU fell 3-1. Saint Francis bounced back to sweep Barton to snap a three-match losing streak, all to ranked opponents.
The Nittany Lions lead the all-time series,39-2, but have lost the last two meetings, including a 3-1 loss at Rec Hall in April in the EIVA Semifinals. Saint Francis was led by Jeff Hogan's 22 kills in the last meeting.
PENN STATE IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS
Penn State is currently ranked in the top-25 in five different team categories including top-10 rankings in Assist per Set - 11.80 (8th) and Digs per Set – 8.89 (10th).
Individually, Chris Nugent is ranked 21st in the nation in kills per set (3.54), while Royce Clemens is sixth in the nation in digs per set averaging 2.66. Luke Braswell is ninth in the nation in assists per set averaging 10.40.
NITTANY LIONS 14TH IN LATEST AVCA POLL
Completing the first weekend sweep of the season against Mount Olive and Coker, Penn State men's volleyball moved up one spot to No. 13 in the latest American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) poll.
Penn State (5-4) is coming off a weekend that featured two Penn State wins as the Lions downed Mount Olive 3-0 followed by a 3-0 defeat of Coker.
Defending national champions Ohio State remained the number one team in the nation receiving all 24 first-place votes, followed by UCLA at No. 2, Long Beach State at No. 3, BYU at No. 4 and Hawai'i rounding out the top-five.
There will be a silent auction benefitting Memorial Sloane Kettering Cancer Center with auction items including vintage team jerseys and media guides, a 2006 championship banner, autographed team ball and more.
The first 500 fans will receive white shakers, there will be pizza for students in attendance (while supplies last) as well as post-game autographs with the team!
PAVLIK KNOWS HOW TO WIN
In his 23rd year at the helm of the program, head coach Mark Pavlik has amassed over 500 wins. Pavlik currently stands at 527-166 for his career.
FRESH FACES ON THE COURT IN 2017
The defending EIVA regular season champion men’s volleyball team returns a core group of eight letterwinners and four starters this year, while welcoming five freshmen to the roster.
The new additions include 6-10 MB/OH Cameron Bartus from West Seneca, N.Y., Declan Pierce, a 5-10 Libero from Buffalo, N.Y., Kyle Mackiewicz, a 6-8 OPP/MH from Edison, N.J., Bobby Wilden, a 6-8 OH/MH from Ashburn, Va. and Nathan Smith, a 6-5 setter from Los Altos, Calif.
Penn State hits the road for weekend matches against NJIT (Feb. 10), and Princeton (Feb. 11) with both match times slated for a 7 p.m. ET first serve.