SPRINGFIELD, Ohio – The Mount St. Joseph University men's volleyball team traveled to Wittenberg University to play the Tigers for the second time this season. In the Lions first matchup against the Tigers, they were defeated in three sets. Last night, the Lions were carried by a strong offensive effort, enroute to a victory.
The Tigers challenged the Lions in the early going of the first set, taking a two point lead. The Mount was able to rally to tie the score at 13, but Wittenberg went on a three point run soon after. The Lions went on a run of their own on the back of a five point service run from Rey Sanchez (Arvada, CO/Ralston Valley High School) and two big blocks both of which involved freshman Jack Spohn (Columbus, Ohio/Olentangy). The Lions would hold tight in the final points and an error from Wittenberg gave them a 25-21 victory in set one.
In the second set the two teams went point for point with each other most of the set. The Tigers were able to go on a five point run halfway through the set which would eventually lead to set point. Down 19-24 the Lions managed to string together a run but a hitting error gave the Tigers set two with a score of 25-23.
The Lions found their momentum again in the third set and earned two quick kills from Darrell Swanson (Las Vegas, NV / Arbor View). The Lions continued to build their lead throughout the set and wouldn't look back, leading by as much as seven points. The Tigers began their comeback in the final points but the deficit would be too much and the Lions would take the third set 25-18.
In the fourth set Wittenberg got off to a hot start but the run was quickly countered by the Lions. The Tigers went on a run halfway through the set to take the lead but the Lions managed to bring the score back yet again. Down 15-16 the Lions would start their comeback on an eight point service run from Ben Holt (Cincinnati, OH / Roger Bacon), giving them a 21-17 lead. The Mount held strong in the final points and were able to defeat the Tigers 25-21 and take the match three sets to one.
Swanson and Zack Storc (Columbus, OH / Bishop Watterson) led the charge for the Lions on both ends of the court. Swanson had 16 kills and 16 digs while Storc had 13 kills and six digs, respectively. Senior Nick Melbardis (Indianapolis, IN / Cathedral) also chipped in 15 digs for the Lions on defense.
The Lions (3-8, 0-0) will travel to Harrisburg, VA to take on Southern Virginia University, Eastern Mennonite University, and Lancaster Bible College in a two day tri-match on Friday 2/22 and Saturday 2/23. Continue to check MSJSports.com for updates on the Lions 2019 season!