BEVERLY, Mass. -- January 20, 2007 -- - Springfield College entered Saturday night's match-up with Endicott ranked fifth in the most recent CSTV/AVCA Division III Men's Coaches Poll, and the Pride did not disappoint, winning three games to one. Game scores were 30-27, 30-24, 25-30, 30-20. Springfield has now won two straight and has raised its record to 2-3 overall. In Division III competition, SC is now 2-0.
The Gulls opened up an early 2-0 lead in game one, only to have Springfield rattle off six of the next seven points to take an early 6-3 advantage. The Pride and the Gulls would exchange points over the next several minutes, with Springfield holding a slight 10-7 advantage a third of the way through the first game. The Pride's Eric Palumbo (Chili, NY/Pace) led SC on a strong serving stretch, extending the visitors lead to five at 16-11. Springfield College showed its strength as game one continued, building a convincing 24-17 lead, winning 30-27.
The visitors opened game two by building a quick 6-2 lead. Following an Endicott timeout, the Pride continued dictating the play, as Springfield was able to add to its advantage at 13-5. The Gulls started to find their groove midway through game two, scoring six of the next nine points, and pulling within five at 16-11. Moments later, Endicott's Matt Keepin (Harwinton, CT/Lewis S. Mills) hammered home a huge point for the home team, cutting the deficit to three at 23-20. Springfield, however, once again found a way to survive the Endicott flurry, holding on for a 30-24 game two decision.
Endicott made a statement early on in the third game that it would not go quietly, and with 10 points scored in contest number three, the Gulls led 6-4. EC then went on a strong run, grabbing six of the next eight points, forcing Springfield to burn a timeout with the score 12-6 in favor of the blue and green. The Gulls were able to extend their lead to 16-7 after a strong defensive block by senior captain Matt Keepin. Springfield would show its talent midway through game three, as the Pride was able to close the gap to four at 21-17 after a strong kill from freshman Andrew Nally (Rochester, NY/Pace). Endicott, led by co-captains Matt Keepin and George Chapell (Haverhill, MA/Haverhill) showed great poise under pressure in game three, eventually holding on for the 30-25 win.
Much like in game two, Springfield opened the fourth game by marching out front with a 6-2 advantage. The Pride continued applying pressure up front, leading 15-8 at the midpoint of game four. The two teams would trade the next eight points, as the Pride continued to stay out in front at 19-12. The match momentum stayed on Springfield's side, as SC was simply too strong for Endicott; taking the game and the match, 30-20.
Up next, Springfield hosts MIT on Tuesday, Jan. 23 at 7 pm.