No. 3 Penn State Grounds Lewis, 3-1


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University Park, Pa. - The third-ranked Penn State men's volleyball team defeated Lewis in four games (30-28, 28-30, 30-26, 30-22) Friday night to improve to 4-0 for the season.

"I've been through 14 years of getting off the plane from Hawaii and trying to play in the next week," said head coach Mark Pavlik. "The guys were able to overcome the jet lag and provide some energy. The win tonight was due to the diligence and the effort of the team to overcome those challenges."

Junior middle hitter Max Holt (Cincinnati, Ohio) led the team with 14 kills on .391 hitting as junior outside hitter Matt Anderson (West Seneca, N.Y.) provided 13 kills in three games of action as junior outside hitter Jay Stauffer (Columbia, Pa.) tallied 10 kills on .450 hitting and sophomore middle hitter Max Lipsitz (Williamsville, N.Y.) added in seven kills. As a team, Penn State outhit Lewis .254 to .173.

Senior setter Luke Murray (East Petersburg, Pa.) dished out 46 assists while freshman libero Dennis Del Valle (Toa Alta, Puerto Rico) posted his fourth consecutive double-digit dig match, providing 12 digs as Stauffer and Murray each recorded seven digs and freshman outside hitter Thomas Pereira (Brasilia, Brazil) tallied five digs along with his three kills.

Penn State outblocked Lewis, 13.5 to 12.0. Lipsitz topped the blocking list with six stuffs as Holt added five, Anderson provided four and Murray and junior opposite Ryan Sweitzer (Lancaster, Pa.) both chipped in three blocks.

Jared Dayton led the Flyers with 21 kills while Drew Pickering tallied 13 kills. Mike Iandolo dished out 44 assists and Nick Perakes notched 13 digs. Alex Vigansky headed the blocking list with five blocks.

Penn State took the early 7-4 lead to start the match on a Holt kill and went up 16-12 on another Holt kill. A Sweitzer kill made it 19-16 and a Sweitzer and Lipsitz block pushed the score to 22-18. Lewis pulled within one at 25-24 on a Lion attack error but a Flyer service error gave Penn State the two-point cushion. The teams traded points twice and out of a Lewis timeout, the Flyers scored twice on kills from Iandolo and Dayton to knot the score at 28-28. But following a Penn State timeout, a Lewis attack error and a Lion block from Lipsitz and Sweitzer gave Penn State the game, 30-28. Holt led the Lions with six kills in the stanza.

The second game remained even early on, with nine ties before two Lipsitz kills put Penn State ahead 12-10. Penn State maintained the slight advantage, going up 14-12 on a Pereira kill and 17-15 on Pereira ace. With the Nittany Lions holding the 22-19 advantage, Anderson entered the game after traveling back from New York, where he had been all week due to a death in the family. Lewis knotted the score at 22-22 on two kills and an ace, and following two Lion errors, the teams traded points three times, with a Flyer ace putting them up 27-25. Out of a Penn State timeout, an Anderson kill pulled the Lions within one at 27-26 but Lewis responded with a kill of its own and the teams exchanged points the rest of the way, with a Flyer kill from Billy Sahagian giving Lewis the game at 30-28.

The third game picked up where the second left off, with Penn State going ahead 17-14 on three consecutive Lewis attack errors. An Anderson kill and a Lion triple block from Anderson, Lipsitz and redshirt freshman Alan Mars (Rochester, N.Y.) put Penn State up 19-16 and an Anderson put-away made it 21-17. But two Lion errors and a Lewis kill pulled the Flyers within one at 21-20 but an Anderson kill halted the run and gave Penn State a two-point cushion at 22-20. Two Holt kills gave the Lions the 24-21 lead and a block by Lipsitz and Stauffer made it 28-24 before a Lewis service error ended the game, 30-26. Anderson recorded seven kills in the game.

Penn State jumped on top early in the fourth game, taking the 10-6 lead on a Holt and Murray block and going up 14-11 on a Murray and Lipsitz block. Lewis pulled within one at 15-14 on back to back kills but a Lipsitz put-away extended the lead to two at 16-14 and the Lions remained ahead, going up 22-17 on four consecutive Flyer errors. A Holt kill made it 23-18 and another one pushed it to 25-19. A Stauffer kill pushed the score to 26-20 and another made it 28-21 before a Lewis service error ended the game, 30-22. Holt and Anderson each had four kills in the game.

The Nittany Lions take on the Alumni on Saturday, Jan. 12 at 3:00 p.m. in the South Gym of Rec Hall. Penn State then travels to Ball State and Ohio State on Friday and Saturday, Jan. 18 and 19.

For more information on the Penn State men's volleyball team, please visit

Article courtesy of Penn State athletics.

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