Chris Kendrick (@CKendrick86)
CHICOPEE, Mass. – The Elms College men's volleyball was downed in three set by visiting Endicott College, 3-0 (15-25, 9-25, 21-15), in a New England Collegiate Conference matchup at Picknelly Arena Saturday afternoon.
The opening to the first set featured back-and-forth play from the squads. Trailing 5-4, the Blazers had consecutive kills from freshmen Blake Fry (Natick, Mass.), Gabriel Reis Levy (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), and Daniel Bondarovsky (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) to capture an 7-6 advantage. Endicott used kills from juniors Dan Seaver (Milford, Mass.) and John Osborne (Freehold, N.J.), sandwiching a pair of Elms errors, to take an 11-8 lead. A block from Bondarovsky pulled the Blazers within two, 13-11, until the Gulls created separation with a 7-1 run, featuring a pair of kills from junior Alex Wasik (Milford, Mass.). Osborne sealed the first set victory with three kills in the final four points to secure the 25-15 win.
The Gulls lead throughout the first set, grabbing an early 5-2 lead. Leading 10-5, Endicott rattled off six straight kills, fueled by a trio from Seaver, to grab a 16-5 advantage. The Gulls pushed their lead to 21-9, followed by a pair of kills from both Osborne and sophomore Ryan Sutherland (Fairport, N.Y.) to close out the 25-9 set.
The Blazers bounced back with a competitive third set, jumping out to a 3-2 lead on blocks from Bondarovsky and senior Kevin Welsh (Wilbraham, Mass.). One point separated the teams over the next 17 points scored, and a kill from Bondarovsky knotted the match at 11-11. Bondarovsky served up an ace to extend the Blazers lead to 15-12. The Gulls rallied back with a 5-1 run to regain a 17-16 advantage. Reis Levy put a ball away in the middle of the court to cap off a 4-2 run by Elms, giving the Blazers a 20-19 lead. Elms would grab a 21-20 lead on a Gulls error, but Endicott re-grouped behind a kill from Wasik, followed by a pair of blocks from the junior middle blocker to secure the final set win for Endicott.
The Blazers were led by a team-high six kills from Bondarovsky. Reis Levy added five kills and six digs, while sophomore Qua'Sean Crowe (Stamford, Conn.) tallied four kills and two blocks. Welsh dished out a team-best 17 assists in the loss.
Osborne paced the Gulls attack with a game-high 11 kills on 13 attempts with just one error. Wasik registered nine kills and six blocks, and Seaver had five kills. Senior libero Kristian Catalan (Sudbury, Mass.) snared a game-high 16 digs, and freshman Troy Riorden added 12 digs and two service aces.
Elms drops to 2-13 on the season, and 0-4 in NECC play, while Endicott improves to 6-7 overall, and 5-0 in the league. The Blazers return to action Thursday night at home against Mount Ida. The Gulls host Southern Vermont Tuesday night at 7:00 p.m.