BENNINGTON, Vt. – In a regular season-ending tri-match at Southern Vermont College, the hosting men's volleyball team took both of its matches with a 3-0 win over Regis College in New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) action and then a 3-1 victory against Keuka College in the day-cap. Keuka swept the Pride in the middle match in 3-0 convincing fashion.
SVC finishes the regular season with a 6-6 mark in conference play, 11-20 overall, while Regis dropped to 2-20 overall, 2-10 in NECC action, to close out the 2013 campaign. Keuka moves to 10-17 overall on the season looking ahead to the North Eastern Athletic Conference postseason after going 3-2 in the league.
SVC 3, Regis 0
The Mountaineers defeated Regis with game scores of 25-10, 25-9, and 25-15.
Southern Vermont made the most of the Pride errors and used a balanced attack as eight players recorded a kill. Junior Pierre Massena (West Milford, N.J.) and sophomore Joey Dighton (Riverside, Calif.) each had four kills and two digs while Massena added two service aces, one block assist and one solo. Sophomore James Barker (Southborough, Mass.) and sophomore Florentino Escovedo (Fresno, Calif.) had five digs apiece on the match, and sophomore setter Herson Canta (Los Angeles, Calif.) recorded another five digs, 21 assists, three kills and eight service aces.
Pride freshman Joe Coye (Plaistow, N.H.) had a team-high four kills, a solo block, two service aces and five digs. Four other Regis members recorded five digs including junior Angel Aguilar (Silver Springs, Md.) who added four assists.
Keuka 3, Regis 0
The second match of the day saw the Storm come out and fly up to hit big kills, led by freshman Tom Campbell (Penfield, N.Y.) who landed eight. Keuka won with set scores of 25-8, 25-7, and 25-10.
Storm sophomore setter Ryan Kelly (Clifton Springs, N.Y.) had 25 assists to go along with five service aces, four digs and a solo block. Junior Devin Lesch (San Diego, Calif.) had six kills and only one hitting error on eight attempts while adding two block assists.
Regis saw Coye again lead the team with four kills while Aguilar had seven assists. Sophomore Claude Jean (Rindge, N.H.) had nine digs for the Pride with a kill.
SVC 3, Keuka 1
The Mountaineers then tried to avenge a 3-2 loss from earlier in the season at Keuka when they matched up against the Storm in the final tilt of the day. SVC won the match, 25- 15, 23-25, 25-22, and 27-25.
Southern Vermont took the first set while committing only three hitting errors with 11 kills on 24 attempts for a .333 hitting percentage. The Mountaineers pressured Keuka into seven hitting errors to win the game in solid fashion.
Keuka came back to grab the second frame which saw both teams record 12 kills. SVC had one more hitting error in a tightly contested set that saw both teams go back-and-forth with kills and errors and the Storm squeaking out the decision.
The next two sets saw much of the same with neither team able to pull away from the other. The third game had Southern Vermont take a lead and inch itself toward the 25-22 win. Keuka found itself down late in the deciding set, however the Storm came back to tie it at 24-24. Southern Vermont prevailed and used kills by freshman Alonzo Wright (Pico Rivera, Calif.) and freshman Caleb Odom (Redlands, Calif.) to finish off the match.
Odom led the team with 12 kills, adding four assists, six digs and a block assist. Canta assisted on 32 of the 43 Mountaineer kills and pitched in with 12 digs and two block assists on the defensive end. Escovedo had a match-high 22 digs, and Dighton added three digs, three block assists and a solo block to his nine kills. Wright also finished with nine kills along with four digs and a block assist.
Storm sophomore Manny Fernandez (Tacoma, Wash.) led all players with 14 kills to go along with his six digs, five block assists and a solo block. Kelly had 32 assists, four kills, 14 digs and a block assist. Freshman Connor Hinman (Lethbridge, Alberta) recorded a team-high 21 digs with seven assists, and freshman Christopher Mooring (Chesapeake, Va.) added 10 kills and 13 assists.
"I'm glad we rounded out the season with three-straight wins in the absence of key players," said head coach Josh Stokes. "Our young guys really stepped up and delivered. Today, the focus was Pierre with his Senior Day. He's given us two amazing seasons of hard work, commitment and leadership; without Pierre, we would be lost."
Southern Vermont looks ahead to next weekend's NECC postseason tournament in which the Mountaineers will face off with Endicott College.