No. 10 Men¡¯s Volleyball Hits The Road For Last Weekend
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa., April 12, 2006 - The 10th-ranked Penn State men¡¯s volleyball team takes to the road in its final weekend stand away from Rec Hall. The Nittany Lions face No. 12 IPFW on Friday, April 14 at 7:00 p.m., in Fort Wayne, Ind., before squaring off with No. 14 Ball State on Saturday, April 15 at 7:00 p.m., in Muncie, Ind.
Penn State earned a bye in the EIVA quarterfinals originally slated for April 22 and will host the EIVA Championship on Thursday and Saturday, April 27 and 29. The winner of the EIVA Championship earns a berth in the National Collegiate Championship, hosted by Penn State on Thursday and Saturday, May 4 and 6.
Previewing Penn State
Senior opposite Matt Proper leads Penn State with 4.28 kills per game on .403 hitting as five other Nittany Lion players are averaging more than two kills per game, including junior outside hitter Alex Gutor (2.67 kpg), freshman outside hitter Matt Anderson (2.60 kpg), senior middle hitter Nate Meerstein (2.53 kpg), senior outside hitter Kevin Wentzel (2.43 kpg) and freshman middle hitter Max Holt (2.05 kpg).
Senior setter Dan O¡¯Dell has returned from knee surgery and directed the offense against the Flyers on Saturday with 37 assists. For the year, he is averaging 9.60 assists per game. Sophomore setter Luke Murray also sees action and is dishing out 9.14 assists per game for the season.
Junior libero Ryan Walthall tops the squad with 1.97 digs per game as Anderson ranks second on the team with 1.29 digs per game and Wentzel chips in 1.09 digs per game. Holt heads the blocking chart with 1.27 blocks per game and Meerstein collects an average of 1.13 blocks per game.
As a team, Penn State is hitting .339, good for third in the nation, while averaging 15.86 kills per game, 1.33 service aces per game, 8.36 digs per game, 3.18 blocks per game and 20.37 points per game.
? Penn State leads Ball State, 48-19, in a series that began in 1977. The last meeting this season was a three-game Cardinal win (32-30, 30-28, 30-28) on Jan. 14 at Rec Hall. The last meeting in Muncie, Ind., was a five-game Nittany Lion thriller (28-30, 21-30, 30-25, 30-23, 25-23) on Jan. 21, 2005.
For more information on the Penn State men¡¯s volleyball team and the National Collegiate Championship, please visit www.GoPSUsports.com.