SPRINGFIELD, Mass., February 15, 2006 – Springfield College sophomore outside hitter Eric Palumbo (Rochester, N.Y.) recorded a match-high 25 kills to go along with five blocks, but it was the Trojans of Mount Olive College which defeated the sixth-ranked Pride, 3-2, in a non-conference match this evening in Blake Arena.
SC drops to 5-6 overall on the season and remains at 3-1 in Eastern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (EIVA)-Hay Division play. The Pride won the first and third games of the match, 30-26 and 30-27, but fell to the Trojans in the second, fourth and fifth games, as Mount Olive improves to 2-3 overall on the year.
The Trojans were led by sophomore middle hitter Julio Arnaiz with 22 kills, 10 digs, and seven blocks. Freshman outside hitter Pedro Penate hit a match-best .368 with 21 kills and just seven errors on 38 swings. Penate also led all players with 13 digs in the non-conference affair. Freshman Kyle Lewis registered a match-high eight blocks.
The Pride, playing without two of its starters, received significant contributions from sophomore opposite David Smietana (Buffalo, N.Y.), with 20 kills, and sophomore Javier Rosario (San Juan, Puerto Rico), with 57 assists. Junior outside hitter Peter Sander (Scotia, N.Y.) had a team-best 10 digs, while Palumbo and freshman middle blocker Andrew Sipe (New Oxford, Pa.) each added five blocks.
SC will next venture on a four-match road trip starting at No. 1 Juniata College on Friday night, February 17, in a 7:00 p.m. conference contest.