No. 5 Men's Volleyball Pounds Princeton, 3-0
PRINCETON, N.J.; February 23, 2007 ¨C The fifth-ranked Penn State men¡¯s volleyball team used an all-around dominating performance to down EIVA-foe Princeton in three games (30-17, 30-23, 30-22) Friday night in Princeton, N.J. The Nittany Lions improve to 8-2 and 4-0 in the Eastern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (EIVA) while the Tigers fall to 4-5 and 2-2 in conference action.
¡°We were pretty good tonight,¡± said head coach Mark Pavlik. ¡°Defensively, offensively, serving, we¡¯re just playing well right now.¡±
Senior Alex Gutor (Kiev, Ukraine) led Penn State with 10 kills on .438 hitting as freshman Max Lipsitz (Williamsville, N.Y.) racked up nine kills on an errorless 13 attacks to hit .692. Senior Aaron Smith (Forest, Va.) posted seven kills on a season-high .600 hitting while sophomores Matt Anderson (West Seneca, N.Y.) and Max Holt (Cincinnati, Ohio) both contributed six kills. As a team, Penn State attacked at a .439 clip, including hitting .714 in the first game alone (15-0-21).
Junior setter Luke Murray (East Petersburg, Pa.) directed the offense for the first two games, recording 20 assists, three digs and two blocks while redshirt sophomore Travis Foltz (Westlake Village, Calif.) provided 11 assists, two digs and a block in the third game. Senior libero Ryan Walthall (Irvine, Calif.) led the defensive front with nine digs as Smith posted eight.
The Nittany Lions recorded their second consecutive double-digit service ace match with 13, the most since Penn State tallied 12 aces in a three-game match against Lewis on Jan. 19, 2002. Holt tied his career best while Anderson set a new personal mark with four apiece as Gutor racked up three and Murray and Smith each provided one. Gutor¡¯s three aces give him 73 for his career and place him eighth all-time on the Penn State career chart. Zeljko Koljesar (2000-03) tops the list with 130 total career aces.
Penn State outblocked Princeton, 10.5 to 3.0, led by Lipsitz with a career-high six and Smith with a season-high five.
Mike Vincent led the Tigers with 10 kills as Peter Eichler tallied nine and Carl Hamming posted six.
The Nittany Lions remain on the road, traveling to EIVA opponent East Stroudsburg on Monday, Feb. 26 at 7:30 p.m. Penn State returns home on March 8-9 to host Rutgers-Newark and Mercyhurst before heading to California over spring break to face No. 3 UC Santa Barbara (Mar. 12), No. 2 UC Irvine (Mar. 14), NAIA-power Cal Baptist (Mar. 16) and No. 13 Long Beach State (Mar. 17).