No. 2 Penn State Stomps No. 10 IPFW, 3-0
University Park, Pa. - The second-ranked Penn State men's volleyball team hit for the highest percentage since the 2005 season en route to stomping No. 10 IPFW in three games (30-20, 30-22, 30-20) Saturday night at Rec Hall in front of 2,347 fans. The Nittany Lions (12-0) attacked at a .553 clip for the match, with four of the five attackers hitting .500 or better.
"We were pretty good tonight," said head coach Mark Pavlik. "It's awfully tough to find fault when you hit .553 in a match. Everything worked in our favor, it was a pretty good effort by us tonight. I'm pleased with the weekend as a whole, the way we handled these teams. I like how we figured out each game and then put our foot on the accelerator and didn't let up. That's a great trait to have."
Junior outside hitter Matt Anderson (West Seneca, N.Y.) led all players with 16 kills on .500 hitting as junior opposite Ryan Sweitzer (Lancaster, Pa.) posted 15 kills on .650 hitting and junior middle hitter Max Holt (Cincinnati, Ohio) pounded 10 kills without an error to hit .714. Penn State's season-high hitting percentage was bolstered by a blistering .714 team attack percentage in the second game (16-1-21).
Senior setter Luke Murray (East Petersburg, Pa.) dished out 45 assists while junior outside hitter Jay Stauffer (Columbia, Pa.) led all players with seven digs and Anderson chipped in five.
The Nittany Lions recorded six service aces in the match, with five coming from Holt in the second game alone, and Penn State outblocked IPFW 9.0 to 3.0. Sophomore middle hitter Max Lipsitz (Williamsville, N.Y.) topped the blocking chart with five stuffs as Sweitzer and Anderson added in three apiece and Stauffer, Murray and junior Jon Sherrick (Mountville, Pa.) all tallied two each.
C.J. Macias led the Mastodons with 12 kills and Graydon Ainsworth dished out 29 assists. Matt Pliske notched six digs and Macias and Oliver Kook both recorded two blocks.
Penn State captured the slim 13-10 lead to start the match on a Stauffer kill but IPFW fought back to tie the game at 14-14 on an Ainsworth ace and kills from Brock Ullrich and Macias. A Lipsitz kill put the Lions back on top and two Mastodon errors and an Anderson and Lipsitz block pushed Penn State ahead 18-14. The Nittany Lions maintained the advantage, going up 23-18 on an Anderson kill and 25-19 on a Holt put-away. Following a Lion triple block from Lipsitz, Murray and Stauffer to make the score 26-19, two Sweitzer kills, a triple block from Sweitzer, Sherrick and Lipsitz and an IPFW attack error gave Penn State the game, 30-20.
The Nittany Lions again began with a slim margin, going up 13-11 in the second game aided by three consecutive Holt service aces. Putaways from Sweitzer and Holt pushed Penn State up 15-12 and a Lipsitz, Stauffer and Murray block helped the Nittany Lions claim six of the next nine points to take the 21-15 advantage. Kills from Sweitzer and Anderson made it 25-20 before a Holt ace and a Sweitzer kill ended the game, 30-22. Penn State attacked at a .714 clip in the set, recording one error and 16 kills on 21 total swings.
Penn State jumped out to the 17-9 lead on two Sweitzer putaways and an Anderson kill. A Holt kill made it 19-10 and a Stauffer kill and consecutive IPFW hitting errors made it 23-12. The teams traded points four times, with a Lion triple block from Sherrick, Sweitzer and Anderson giving Penn State the 28-16 cushion. A kill from redshirt freshman Alan Mars (Rochester, N.Y.), the first of his career, ended the game, 30-20.
Penn State remains at home, hosting EIVA-foe George Mason on Friday, Feb. 15 at 7:00 p.m. in the South Gym of Rec Hall before welcoming Princeton on Saturday, Feb. 16 at 4:00 p.m. in the Main Gym of Rec Hall.
For more information on the Penn State men's volleyball team, please visit www.GoPSUsports.com.
Article courtesy of Penn State athletics.