No. 11 Men¡¯s Volleyball Vies For National Semifinal Berth
University Park, Pa., April 28, 2006 ¨C The 11th-ranked and top-seeded Penn State men¡¯s volleyball team (19-8) is one win away from earning the chance to compete for a national title on its home floor as it takes on Saint Francis (17-9) in the EIVA Championship Final on Saturday, April 29 at 7:30 p.m. at Rec Hall. The contest will be aired live on College Sports Television (CSTV) with Jason Knapp and Krista Blunk on the call. Audio and GameTracker can be found at www.GoPSUsports.com.
For the first time since the inception of the EIVA Championship in 1986, two teams from the state of Pennsylvania will compete for the league championship crown. The winner joins the winners of the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (MIVA) and the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) and one at-large team selected by the NCAA Championship committee (3:30-4:00 p.m. ET Sunday on ESPNews) at the National Collegiate Championship hosted by Penn State on May 4 & 6.
Tickets for the EIVA Championship are $5 for adults, $3 for youth and senior citizens and $2 per person for groups of 10 or more. Penn State students are free with their university ID. Tickets will be available at the Rec Hall ticket office beginning at 5:45 p.m. on April 29. National Collegiate Championship tickets will also be on sale at the Rec Hall ticket office throughout the EIVA Championship.
Previewing Penn State
For the season, Proper leads the team with 4.22 kills per game as five other Nittany Lion players average more than two kills per game, including junior outside hitter Alex Gutor (Kiev, Ukraine/2.65 kpg), senior outside hitter Kevin Wentzel (Pittsburgh, Pa./2.53 kpg), senior middle hitter Nate Meerstein (Pittsburgh, Pa./2.47 kpg), freshman outside hitter Matt Anderson (West Seneca, N.Y./2.46 kpg) and Holt (2.13 kpg).
Senior setter Dan O¡¯Dell (Rochester, N.Y.) directs the offense with 9.94 assists per game as junior libero Ryan Walthall (Irvine, Calif.) leads the defense with 1.93 digs per game. Holt tops the blocking chart with 1.26 blocks per game as Meerstein provides 1.10 blocks per game and Proper adds 0.80 blocks per game.
As a team, Penn State is hitting .339 while averaging 15.83 kills per game, 1.32 service aces per game, 8.34 digs per game, 3.08 blocks per game and 20.22 points per game.
For more information on the Penn State men¡¯s volleyball team, the EIVA Championship and the National Collegiate Championship, please visit www.GoPSUsports.com.