Men's Volleyball

Men's volleyball team sweeps Saint Katherine in home opener

Courtesy of On My Game Photography
Courtesy of On My Game Photography

Irvine Valley's men's volleyball team swept four-year university Saint Katherine, 26-24, 25-23, 25-21, in its first home match of the 2019 season on Wednesday night.

The Lasers had started the season with a contest at Santa Barbara City last week and then played a pair of matches in the Orange Coast Quad event this past Saturday.

Wednesday's win improved the Lasers' record to 3-1 overall. Saint Katherine's record went to 2-4 overall.

Irvine Valley was up by as many as five points early in the first set, but Saint Katherine tied it at 14 after a series of IVC hitting errors.

The set was back and forth from there with 11 ties and three lead changes.

Irvine Valley had a set point at 24-23 after a kill by sophomore outside hitter Sean Carroll, but Saint Katherine tied the score with a kill by Jacob Champlin. 

Irvine Valley moved to another set point after a kill by freshman middle blocker Tristan Belsby and then freshman defensive specialist Red Ramos ended the set with an ace.

The Lasers jumped out to 10-6 and then 18-12 leads in the second set, but Saint Katherine pulled to within 18-16 after an IVC hitting error. And the Firebirds got within 23-22 after an ace by Raymond Hart.

But Ivine Valley came back with a kill by Belsby to get to set point and two points later, Carroll came through with a big kill to wrap up the set.

The Lasers had to rally in the third set. Down, 18-15, IVC scored four of the next five points. The Lasers tied the score at 19 on a kill by freshman middle blocker Grant Marocchi. Freshman outside hitter Declan Holder and Marocchi each answered Saint Katherine points with kills to make it 21-21.

Marocchi's kill was the start of a five-point run that finished off the set and ended the match for the Lasers. Up, 24-21, Carroll tooled the block to close out the win.

The Lasers hit an impressive .500 on the night as team. Marocchi had 12 kills, three block assists, three aces and hit .400. Carroll finished with eight kills, and Holder and Belsby each had seven kills for the Lasers. Holder hit .600 and Belsby hit .545. Freshman outside hitter Demetre Gossett added five kills, five aces and hit .833.

Freshman setter Isaiah Powell ran the offense with 38 assists.

Irvine Valley plays again on Friday, hosting the Costa Mesa Stunners at 6 p.m.

The Lasers also play at home on Saturday. They take on Westcliff University at 2 p.m.


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