Irvine, Calif. - January 19, 2013 - The Springfield College men's volleyball team kicked off the 2013 season in impressive fashion as it split a pair of matches on its trip to California. The Pride swept California Baptist on Saturday afternoon before dropping a four-set match to host Concordia University.
The Pride handled the Lancers, 25-17, 25-22, 25-20 before dropping a 25-21, 25-19, 19-25, 27-25 in the nightcap to the Eagles.
California Baptist, a Division II school which competes in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF), recently knocked off the reigning Division I National Champion, UC Irvine, in five sets on Wednesday.
This marks the first time since 2007 that the Pride has knocked off a MPSF school, as Springfield previously bested UC San Diego in the Volleyball Hall of Fame Morgan Classic.
Alistair Matthews and Mike Pelletier each tallied a team-best nine kills in the victory. In the middle, Greg Falcone and Jimmy O'Leary notched five kills each hitting .444, while O'Leary racked up a career-high seven blocks.
In his first collegiate match, Luis Vega produced seven kills, hitting .500, to go along with seven digs, while Mike Becker totaled 31 assists running the offense, which finished the evening hitting .397.
Against the Eagles, which are an NAIA program, John Coen came off the bench to register a team-best nine kills to go along with four blocks. Pelletier stuffed his stat sheet with eight digs, seven kills, and four blocks, while Falcone led the Pride with six blocks.
Becker dished out 37 assists as the Pride hit .228 in the loss. Both O'Leary and Matthews ended the evening with seven kills as well.
Springfield will return east and compete in the Rutgers Invitational next weekend when it takes on Cairn, Kean, and host Rutgers Newark.