Springfield, Mass. - April 3, 2009 - After dropping the opening game, the Springfield College volleyball team powered past the visiting Princeton Tigers in four games in EIVA Tait Conference action. The Pride lost the first set 30-19, but then rallied to win the next three frames, 31-29, 30-24, 30-25.
SC now stands at 14-7, 6-5 in league play while the Tigers drop to 8-9, 2-6.
Four players for Springfield recorded double-digit kills with AJ Nally leading the way with 15 kills on the night. Nally also added 10 digs for the double-double and posted five blocks as well. Mark Ribeiro tallied 14 kills and added five blocks, while Cal Palumbo was outstanding, notching 12 kills while hitting .647, to go along with five blocks. Ryan Fredrickson finished with 10 kills, five digs, and five blocks, while Andy Sipe continued to be a monster at the net, posting nine blocks to go along with his seven kills. Eric Shoemaker directed Springfield's efficient offense on the night with 50 assists.
For the visitors, Phillip Rosenberg registered a match-high 17 kills to go along with three aces, while Mike Vincent tallied 16 kills at a .667 clip. Brandon Denham dished out 45 assists, while Vincent Tuminelli added a team-best seven digs.
Springfield held a 16-8 advantage in team blocks and owned a .316 to .265 advantage in hitting percentage. Neither team served the ball well as each squad recorded 24 service errors apiece.
With the score knotted at 10 in the opening game, the Tigers jumped all over the Pride, using a 9-2 run to open up a 19-12 lead. The run was capped off by a Rosenberg ace, forcing a Springfield timeout. The Springfield offense had trouble clicking as it totaled the same amount of kills as errors, 11, en route to a .000 hitting percentage. Meanwhile, Princeton was terrific, hitting .429 in the frame en route to the 30-19 victory. Vincent tallied five kills on six swings in the opening game as the visitors took a 1-0 lead.
A back-and-forth second game featured 20 ties and nine lead changes as neither team could pull away from each other. Facing game-point, a Riberio kill evened the game at 29 all. On the ensuing rally, Nally made a spectacular dig to keep the play alive and Fredrickson gave SC a game-point after his kill. The Pride then took down the second game, 31-29, after Ribeiro and Sipe combined for a double block. SC's offense was much different in the stanza, as it totaled 18 kills and just two errors, hitting .516 for the game.
The third game was once again close as a Rosenberg kill made it 11-10 in favor of the Pride. Springfield then rattled off a 7-2 run, fueled by a pair of Nally kills, to take a 18-12 lead. Springfield ran away with the set, 30-24, as its block was the difference. The Pride posted four team blocks in the stanza, with Palumbo and Nally each registering two, while the Tigers didn't record a stuff.
Springfield opened up a 15-10 lead in the fourth game and appeared in control after a Nally kill. However, the visitors battled back on several occasions, and eventually tied the game at 20 after back-to-back Springfield hitting errors. After Charlie Sullivan called a timeout, the Pride responded with a 5-1 run to snag a 25-21 lead. That was all the cushion Springfield needed as it went on to take the game, 30-25. SC offense was once again impressive as it recorded 18 kills in the game, this time hitting .414.
After hitting .000 in the first game, Springfield went on to hit .430 the rest of the game.
Springfield plays its final regular season home game on Saturday evening when it takes on No. 9 NYU at 6:00 pm.