Men’s volleyball drops 3-2 decision at Springfield College, notches 3-0 win over Wentworth
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The fourth-ranked Juniata College men's volleyball held its own against third-ranked Springfield College at the net and on the service line, but in the end the host Pride had a few extra kills and fewer attack errors as the Eagles dropped a 3-2 decision at Blake Arena.
Set scores for Springfield College in the come-from-behind win were 25-21, 21-25, 18-25, 25-23, and 16-14.
However pin hitter Ross Madden (Richmond, Va./Deep Run) had the best all-around night of anyone in a Juniata uniform, recording 13 kills, six total blocks, and three service aces on his way to a team-high 20.0 points.
Senior setter John Almquist (York, Pa./Central York) had 42 assists while leading the Eagles to a .203 hitting percentage, and also turned up a team best 12 digs. Almquist also had a hand on four blocks, helping Juniata post 12.0 total team blocks for the match.
Springfield (19-5) was led by Alistair Matthews' match-high 23 kills behind a .326 hitting percentage, while Mike Pelletier logged 14 kills. Greg Falcone finished with five kills, but also charted six total blocks for the Pride.
Leading two sets to one, Juniata had a chance to close out the match in four with a 21-16 lead in the fourth set. An Almquist side out service error cut the margin to 21-17, and the Pride rattled off the next four points – including a pair on a Falcone-John Coen double block – to knot the set at 21-21.
A Madden kill briefly gave Juniata the lead, but Falcone answered with a termination to tie things up at 22-22. A Bortak attack error and Kuhn kill advanced the score to 23-23, and back-to-back kills by Coen and the Pride's Jeff Gutmann sent the match to a decisive fifth set.
Juniata (20-8) also held an early lead in set five, 8-5, before Springfield took the lead by scoring four straight points. A Pride service error knotted the match at 9-9, and four straight side out points advanced the score to 11-11. A Juniata service error and a Falcone-Pelletier double block gave Springfield at 13-11 lead, and the teams traded to points to put the Pride on match point at 14-12.
A Paul Ejups (Bay Shore, N.Y./West Islip) kill and Almquist-Kyle Rodgers (Mechanicsville, Pa./Atlee) double block tied the set at 14-14, but a Matthews kill followed by a Juniata attack error allowed Springfield to post the 16-14 set five win and take the match.
Juniata posted a 3-0 win over Wentworth Institute of Technology in Friday's early match, however details from the match were unavailable as of late Friday night.
The Eagles return to action on Saturday, March 24, when they face Baruch College and Kean University in day two action at the Springfield College Invitational. Juniata will then stop in Princeton, N.J., on the way home to face Princeton University on Saturday evening.