ALLIANCE, Ohio.— The Fontbonne University men's volleyball team continued its best start in program history on Saturday after picking up three more wins to improve its record out to 8-0.
The Griffins (8-0), totaled 114 kills and a .254 hitting percentage over the three-game stretch. Defensively, they held opposing teams to a .041 hitting percentage and totaled 20 blocks.
Individually, Mark Klusman led with 22 kills and a .265 hitting percentage. Emir Hadzisalihovic contributed 18 kills, a .607 hitting percentage, and a team-high 11 blocks. Brendon Schwartze, meanwhile, ended with 15 kills, 20 digs, and eight blocks.
Braden Woolsey tied Schwartze with 15 kills and Josh Farley added 14. Kyler van Rossum-O'Connell handed out 79 assists and finished second on the team with 22 digs. Zach Rothstein led the group overall with 32 digs.
Fontbonne 3 Thiel 0 (25-23, 25-14, 25-14)
The Griffins (8-0), displayed a dominant performance in the opener with 38 kills, a .237 hitting percentage and surpassed yesterday's season-high with 54 digs. They also posted five solo blocks and eight block assists.
The Tomcats (1-7), had its struggles offensively with 25 kills and 23 errors for a .019 hitting percentage. Mitchell Patterson led with a team-high nine kills.
After back-and-forth play early, the two teams met-up at 10-10. From there, the Griffins gained some breathing room going on a 7-1 run. The Tomcats stayed in it and battled back to tie the set up at 20-20 on Jacob DeRue's kill. However, the Griffins pulled away from Thiel and went on for the 25-23 win on Klusman's kill.
In the second set, a Griffins service error put the Tomcats down 7-6. Fontbonne responded with a 7-0 run with Brendon Schwartze, Klusman, and Braden Woolsey's each hammering home kills to make it a 14-6 outing.
It was all Fontbonne the rest of the way as they went on for the 25-14 win. After totaling 12 kills and 11 errors in the first set, the Griffins compiled 12 kills and limited themselves to four errors for a .296 hitting percentage in the set.
In the third, the Griffins saved its best set for last. The team finished with a match-high 14 kills and one error for a .619 hitting percentage.
The two teams squared up at 11-11 on a Fontbonne service error. That'd be as close as the Tomcats would get with the Griffins closing out the set on a 14-3 run for the 25-14 set and match win.
Fontbonne 3 Mount Union 0 (25-16, 25-16, 25-23)
Against the Raiders, the Griffins finished with 41 kills and a .247 hitting percentage. Hadzisalihovic and Woolsey tied with six kills each. Kyler van Rossum-O'Connell dealt a team-high 20 assists and Rothstein led with 13 digs.
The Raiders were held to 23 kills and .031 hitting percentage. Mark Bruns compiled a match-high 10 kills, setter Jeremy Leyden led with 20 assists and tied Steven Grenier with eight digs.
In the first set, the Griffins took a comfortable 14-6 lead on Woolsey's kill. With the team totaling 13 kills and a .267 hitting percentage in the first they were able to cruise to the 25-16 win.
In the second set, it was back-and-forth play early on but a Raiders service error gave Fontbonne the 14-13 lead. Mount Union tied it at 13-13 on Mark Bruns' kill, but Fontbonne closed out the set on a 12-3 run for the 25-16 victory.
In the third, the Griffins owned a 16-11 lead on a service ace from Ivan Rendon. Later in the set, the team led 24-18 on a Jacob Hartmann kill, but Mount Union got back in it going on a 5-0 run to put them down 24-23 on a block assist from Bruns and Sam Matonis.
However, the Griffins finished off the set and match on a Raiders attack error for the 25-23 win.
Fontbonne 3 Penn St.-Altoona 0 (25-19, 25-20, 25-14)
The Griffins ended the weekend with 35 kills and a .282 hitting percentage against the Lions. Klusman and Farley with nine kills, Kyler van Rossum-O'Connell had 30 assists and Rothstein finished with a team-high eight digs.
The Lions (4-4), were held to 26 kills and Brian Sheddy led with a match-high 11 kills. Kyle Whiteman posted 15 assists.
In the first set, the Lions took a 10-5 lead, but Fontbonne answered with a 6-0 run as Kyler van Rossum-O'Connell's service ace gave them an 11-10 lead.
The two teams continued to go point-for-point, though the Griffins were able to hang on for the 25-19 win on Kyler van Rossum-O'Connell's kill.
In the second set, the Griffins rolled out to an 18-10 lead after consecutive Lions attack errors. Penn St.-Altoona trimmed the lead down to 21-18, but Fontbonne closed out the set on a 4-2 run for the 25-20 win.
In the third, Fontbonne took a 13-7 lead and went on a 5-0 run to own an 18-7 lead after a Lions ball handling error. From there, the Griffins never looked back and went on for the 25-14 set and match win.
The team returns to action on Tuesday in its home opener against Greenville. First-service at 7 p.m.
Fans make sure to stay updated on fontbonnegriffins.com throughout the year for full updates and recaps on the men's volleyball team.
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