No. 1 Penn State Pounds Harvard
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa., - All 17 players contributed as the top-ranked Penn State men's volleyball team pounded Harvard in three games (30-13, 30-13, 30-20) Friday night at Rec Hall. The Nittany Lions improve to 9-0 and host No. 14 Ohio State Saturday night at 7:00 p.m. at Rec Hall. Penn State will raise its 2008 NCAA National Championship banner to the Rec Hall rafters in a ceremony before the match.
For the second consecutive match, senior middle hitter Max Holt (Cincinnati, Ohio) finished with a perfect 1.000 hitting percentage as he again equaled his own school record, going 12-for-12 to lead all players. His counterpart, junior middle hitter Max Lipsitz (Williamsville, N.Y.) was equally as impressive, also finishing with a perfect 1.000 hitting percentage, going 8-for-8, two shy of the 10 attacks required for the record.
In all, 12 Nittany Lion players recorded a kill in the contest, including sophomore outside hitter Alan Mars (Rochester, N.Y.) and senior middle hitter Jon Sherrick (Mountville, Pa.) with four kills each and redshirt freshman setter Edgardo Goas (San Juan, Puerto Rico), junior outside hitter Will Price (Gaithersburg, Md.) and redshirt freshman outside hitter Joe Sunder (Greensburg, Pa.) all with three kills apiece. Senior opposite Ryan Sweitzer (Lancaster, Pa.), sophomore outside hitter Thomas Pereira (Brasilia, Brazil) and sophomore Jason Ambrose (Barrington, Ill.) each notched two kills while sophomore outside hitter Brad McCoy (Irvine, Calif.) and sophomore libero Dennis Del Valle (Toa Alta, Puerto Rico) both posted one kill. As a team, Penn State attacked at a season-high .661 clip, recording 45 kills on 59 swings with only six errors.
Goas directed the Lion offense for two games, dishing out 28 assists before freshman Tor Covello (Yardley, Pa.) took over at the end of the second and third sets and provided seven assists. Del Valle led the defense for two games with five digs as Sweitzer and senior outside hitter Jay Stauffer (Columbia, Pa.) both recorded three digs and Mars and Sherrick posted two each. Goas, Ambrose, sophomore Jesse Wagner (State College, Pa.) and freshman outside hitter Ryan Wolf (York, Pa.) each notched one dig. Penn State outdug Harvard, 19-7.
The Nittany Lions recorded eight service aces while only allowing one. Sunder led the way with a career-high three as Lipsitz and Holt each posted two and Mars added in one.
Penn State outblocked Harvard, 7.0 to 4.0. Price, Holt, Covello and Sherrick all posted two stuffs while Sunder, Pereira, Mars, Stauffer and freshman Mark Shipp (Cincinnati, Ohio) all provided one.
The first game featured seven ties before two Holt kills, a Harvard attack error and a Sunder ace sparked a 12-0 Penn State run encompassing two more Sunder aces and three more Holt kills to push the Nittany Lions ahead 18-7. Consecutive Holt aces pushed the lead to 22-8 and kills from Lipsitz and Sweitzer, along with a Lipsitz ace made it 26-11 before Sweitzer, Price and Holt kills coupled with a Harvard service error gave Penn State the game, 30-13. The Nittany Lions attacked at a .810 clip in the set, posting 18 kills on 21 swings with only one error. Holt recorded seven of his kills in the stanza.
The second game picked up where the first ended, as Penn State took the 14-4 lead behind a Price and Sherrick block, a triple stuff from Mars, Holt and Sunder and another block by Holt and Stauffer. Two Holt kills and a solo Covello block made it 21-7 before a triple block by Covello, Pereira and Shipp pushed the score to 26-11. A Mars kill and a Crimson attack error ended the game, 30-13. Penn State sided out at a perfect 100% in the set, converting on 13-of-13, while attacking at a .733 clip (12-1-15).
Harvard grabbed the early 6-4 lead to start the third game before a Mars ace and kills from Goas and Lipsitz put the Lions ahead 8-6. A Sherrick kill made it 13-9 and kills from Mars and Ambrose pushed the score to 19-12. A McCoy put-away coupled with two more Sherrick kills made it 25-17 before a Mars kill and a Lipsitz service ace ended the game, 30-20.
For more information on the Penn State men's volleyball team, please visit www.GoPSUsports.com. The Penn State men's volleyball 2009 season is presented by Rockvale Outlets and The Outlets At Hershey.
Article courtesy of Penn State athletics.