In the biggest match of the day, No. 10 Penn State outlasted No. 15 Fort Wayne, handing the Mastodons their first loss of the season in four sets. No. 14 Pepperdine also held home court, while King and Barton earned Conference Carolinas victories.
One major milestone was achieved in the early Saturday matches as King’s Jeff Sprayberry became the school’s first member of the 1,000 kill club.
#14 Pepperdine def. Princeton 3-0 (25-20, 25-15, 27-25)
- Pepperdine moves to 4-2; Princeton falls to 1-7
- Malibu, California
- Box Score
- Pepperdine Recap / Princeton Recap
Key Stats: Pepperdine hit .300 or better in all three sets of the sweep, while also serving up eight aces to stifle the Tigers. The Waves outdid Princeton in hitting percentage (.365 to .283), kills (42-27) and aces (8-1), but trailed the Tigers in blocks (8-4). Princeton hit .300 or better in two of the three sets, but could not make up the point differential.
Stat Leaders: Redshirt junior outside David Wieczorek planted 15 kills, while hitting at a career best .650 clip and adding three aces and three blocks. Junior outside Michael Wexter chipped in eight kills on a match and career-high .727 effort (8-0-11) and senior outside Colby Harriman added six kills and two aces. Junior middle Max Chamberlain also put up three blocks in the match.
Sophomore outside Parker Dixon downed seven kills to pace the Tigers, while sophomore middle George Huhmann and sophomore outside Greg Luck followed with six apiece. Huhman added a match-high four blocks, while hitting at a team-best .500 clip (6-1-10).
It Was Over When: Princeton boasted a three-point lead late in Set 3 at 21-18. Two Tiger errors, a Wieczorek kill and Harriman ace brought the Waves into a tie at 22-all. A Luck kill and Pepperdine service error put Princeton at set point at 24-23. Putaways by Wieczorek and Noah Dyer turned the tables and gave the Waves their own match point try at 25-24. The Tigers called timeout and leveled the score with a Dixon kill. Putdowns by Wieczorek and Harriman stole Pepperdine the 27-25 win and the match. Wieczorek downed seven kills in the final set, including six in the final 11 points.
#WavesWin! Hear what @WieczorekDave has to say about it! #WinningWaves pic.twitter.com/Esuvcb1zut
— Pepperdine M. Volley (@PeppVolleyball) February 4, 2018
King def. Emmanuel 3-0 (25-16, 25-18, 25-17)
- King moves to 7-2, 4-0 CC; Emmanuel 2-6, 1-3 CC
- Bristol, Tenn.
- Box Score
- King Recap / Emmanuel Recap
Key Stats: King hit .275 in the match, thanks in part to a big .407 effort in Set 3, while also winning the serve (5-1) and the block (7-5). Emmanuel recovered after hitting .000 in the opening set, but hit just .110 for the match. King senior outside hitter Jeff Sprayberry became the first player in program history to record 1,000 kills as the team won its sixth-straight match.
Stat Leaders: Senior right side Kiel Bell (13) and Sprayberry (12) turned in double-digit kill efforts, each hitting .320 or better to pace the Tornado. Senior middle Adrian Besson (7) and Junior middle Jon Wheaton (6) followed with Wheaton hitting at a team-high .417 clip (6-1-12) and putting up five blocks. Sprayberry notched two of the team’s five aces and added six digs.
Senior middle Ackeem West led the way for Emmanuel with nine kills. Sophomore middle Don Thompson and sophomore middle Alejandro Robles chipped in six putaways each. Thompson hit .667 for the match with nine errorless swings to go with a team-high two blocks. West and Robles also added two stuffs apiece.
It Was Over When: King went up five early (8-3) with two Bell putaways and three Emmanuel miscues. The Lions would get no closer than four the rest of the way. Up 16-12, the Tornado scored seven of the next 11 to boost the margin to seven at 23-16 as five players turned in kills. A Robles putdown slowed King momentarily, but a Besson kill and Emmanuel miscue capped the 25-17 win and the sweep.
Highlights from today's @TornadoMVB sweep of Emmanuel and interview with Jeff Sprayberry who became the first Tornado to reach 1,000 career kills. https://t.co/DK5jrPXhHb #KingPride #TheAftermath
— King Athletics (@KingAthletics) February 3, 2018
Barton def. Limestone 3-0 (25-16, 25-23, 25-18)
- Barton moves to 4-5, 4-0 CC; Limestone falls to 2-8, 0-3 CC
- Gaffney, South Carolina
- Box Score
- Barton Recap / Limestone Recap
Key Stats: Limestone outblocked Barton 13-4.5, but it was not enough to overcome a poor hitting effort in the sweep Saturday afternoon. The Saints hit just .024 in the match, with 21 kills to 19 errors, and .000 in Sets 1 and 3. For its part, Barton outdid Limestone in kills (37-21) and aces (7-4).
Stat Leaders: The Mandilaris brothers provided more than half of the Barton offense. Sophomore right side Angelos notched 17 kills on a match-high 382 hitting effort to go with seven digs, five aces and a team-leading three blocks. Junior outside Vasilis added 10 putaways and seven digs, while junior outside Aleksa Brkovic added seven kills and seven digs.
Freshman outside Geraldo Rivera paced Limestone with eight kills, while senior outside Anthony Savage and freshman outside Matt Anetrella downed five apiece. Savage also pulled up a team-best eight digs. Freshman opposite Francisco Salinger-Cenzual put up a match-high eight blocks and a team-leading two aces, while Logan Riley registered five stuffs.
It Was Over When: Barton led by just one at 10-9 in Set 3, before breaking away with a 9-3 run. Angelos Mandilaris downed three kills and Limestone aided the cause with four errors to give the Bulldogs the 19-12 advantage. The Saints narrowed the gap to four at 22-18, including a kill and a block by Rivera. The Mandilaris brothers accounted for the final three points with Angelos adding a kill and a block and Vasilis putting down the final putaway.
#10 Penn State def. #15 Fort Wayne 3-1 (30-28, 19-25, 29-27, 25-15)
- Penn State moves to 4-2; Fort Wayne falls to 8-1
- University Park, Pennsylvania
- Box Score
- Fort Wayne Recap / Penn State Recap
Key Stats: Six of the seven Penn State hitters with a kill in the match hit at a .333 clip or better, with four hitting over .400, as the Nittany Lions posted a .393 team effort. Fort Wayne hit .274 for the match, hitting nearly .300 or better in all but the final set, falling to .077 in that stanza.
Outside of efficiency, PSU bested Fort Wayne in kills (62-50) and blocks (13-9), while the Mastodons won the serve 5-4 in aces.
Stat Leaders: Redshirt senior opposite Jalen Penrose (15), redshirt junior outside Michael McLaren (13) and redshirt senior middle Kevin Gear (12) led a balanced Penn State offense. Redshirt sophomore middle Jason Donorovich added nine kills and a team-best seven blocks, while Penrose added eight digs and five stuffs and redshirt outside Lee Smith chipped in seven putaways.
Redshirt junior outside Colton Stone notched 14 kills for Fort Wayne, while sophomore outside Pelegrin Vargas added 13 to the team’s tally. Redshirt junior outside Tony Price (9) and freshman middle Tomas Gago (8) were not far behind. Gago hit at an eye-popping .727 clip (8-0-11), while also accounting for a team-best five blocks. Junior setter Michael Keegan put together a double-double with 40 assists, 11 digs and four blocks.
It Was Over When: It was a two-point game midway through Set 4 as Fort Wayne trailed 11-9. Penn State, however, quickly changed that, scoring nine of the next 11 points. Three blocks and three Penrose kills led the Nittany Lion charge to the 20-11 advantage. Kills by Vargas, Gago and Price accounted for Mastodon points, but the team could not break through the eight-point margin. Gear and Lee Smith wrapped up the match at 25-15 PSU.