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Men's Volleyball Takes Down No. 8-Ranked North Central In Straight Sets

Photo credit: Anthony LaRocca
Photo credit: Anthony LaRocca

ST LOUIS, Mo.—The Fontbonne University men's volleyball team earned one of its biggest wins in program history on Friday night after defeating No. 8-ranked North Central in straight sets (25-21, 25-20, 25-16).

Score: Fontbonne 3, North Central 0 (25-21, 25-20, 25-16)

Location: DSAC

Records: Fontbonne 17-1; 2-1 MCVL, North Central 12-8, 2-1 MCVL

How It Happened

The Griffins opened with a 10-4 lead in the first set on a kill from Emir Hadzisalihovic. Later in the set, the team was up 16-10, but the Cardinals trimmed it down to 18-16 on a Fontbonne attack error and that forced the Griffins to take a timeout.

Out of the break, the team stretched its lead back out to 22-18 on kills from Brendon Schwartze and Mark Klusman. The Cardinals got it back down to 23-21, but that'd be as close as they'd get with Fontbonne going on for the 25-21 win on a block assist from Emir Hadzisalihovic and Kyler van Rossum-O'Connell to close out the set.

In the second, it was back-and-forth play early, but the Griffins took a 13-11 lead on kills from Schwartze and Hadzisalihovic.

A kill by Kevin Messner narrowed the Cardinals deficit to 19-18, but Fontbonne responded with a 5-0 run as Hadzisalihovic's kill gave them the 23-18 lead. From there, Fontbonne was able to go on for the 25-20 win on Hadzisalihovic's kill.

It was all Fontbonne in the third. A Griffins service error made it a 12-8 contest in favor of the home team. The team took over the rest of the way, going on a 7-0 run, and closing the Cardinals out on Schwartze's kill for the 25-16 set and match win.

Inside The Numbers

  • Fontbonne finished with 31 kills and 14 errors for a .162 hitting percentage. The team got it done defensively with 43 digs, 14 block assists and 11 blocks overall.
  • The Cardinals concluded with 31 kills and 26 errors for a season-low .047 hitting percentage.

Fontbonne Leaders

  • Mark Klusman led the Griffins overall with 11 kills, four service aces, and seven digs.
  • Hadzisalihovic also filled up his stat line with six kills, four digs, two solo blocks, and four block assists.
  • Josh Farley also contributed six digs, while Brendon Schwartze added four kills, five digs, and four block assists of his own.
  • Kyler van Rossum-O'Connell handed out 23 assists and Zach Rothstein was busy defensively with a match-high 15 digs.

North Central Leaders

  • Jacob Zemba led the Cardinals offensively with 10 kills.
  • Michael Trunzo finished with a double-double with 23 assists and 11 digs.

Up Next

  • The Griffins are back in action tomorrow afternoon when No. 1 Carthage comes to town. First-service at 1 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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