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Griffins Punch Ticket To MCVL Championship Game, Will Meet No. 1 Carthage On Saturday

Photo credit: Jim Naprstek
Photo credit: Jim Naprstek

KENOSHA, Wis.—The No. 2-seeded Fontbonne University men's volleyball team punched its ticket to the MCVL Championship Game on Saturday after a four-set win over Loras on Friday night.

Score: Fontbonne 3, Loras 1 (28-26, 23-25, 25-20, 25-23)

Location: Kenosha, Wis.

Records: Fontbonne 24-2, Loras 21-7

How It Happened

In the first set, the Griffins opened with a 17-14 lead on Mark Klusman's kill. The Duhawks kept battling and eventually took the lead at 23-22 on Mihajlo Gomez's kill and that forced the Griffins to take a timeout.

Out of the break, the two teams went point-for-point meeting up at 26-26. Then, back-to-back kills from Klusman gave Fontbonne the opening 28-26 win.

In the second set, the Griffins were in control with a 17-9 lead on Brendon Schwartze's kill. Loras, though kept chipping away at the deficit and eventually tied it at 22-22 on Gomez's kill.

They met-up once more at 23-23, but a kill from Gomez and a service ace from Jeffrey Budz evened up the match at 1-1 after the 25-23 win.

In the third, the Griffins once again grabbed a 17-15 lead on Josh Farley's kill. The team never relinquished its advantage from there as a block assist from Emir Hadzisalihovic and Klusman, along with a service ace from Klusman gave Fontbonne the 25-23 win.

In the fourth, the back-and-forth play continued, but the Griffins still held a marginal 19-17 lead. Later in the set, a kill from Farley put Fontbonne on top 24-20. However, the Duhawks made it interesting with three straight points. The Griffins were able to finish off the set and the match on Braden Woolsey's kill for the 25-23 set and match win.

Inside The Numbers

  • Fontbonne set new season-high marks in kills (59) and assists (57).
  • The team finished with a .229 hitting percentage.
  • Defensively, the totaled 14 block assists and 12 overall blocks.
  • The Duhawks ended with 48 kills and a .176 hitting percentage.
  • They came away with 50 digs and 14 block assists.

Fontbonne Leaders

  • Klusman led with 18 kills, seven digs, two solo blocks, and five block assists.
  • Farley ended with 12 kills and a .156 hitting percentage.
  • Hadzisalihovic posted 11 kills and a .400 hitting percentage.
  • Schwartze contributed nine kills and eight digs, while Woolsey had eight kills and a match-high six block assists.
  • Kyler van Rossum-O'Connell dished out a season-high 53 assists and collected his seventh double-double with 12 digs.
  • Zach Rothstein tied with 12 digs.

Loras Leaders

  • Gomez had a match-high 20 kills and .368 hitting percentage.
  • Grant Ooms concluded with 11 kills and 16 digs.
  • Setter Patrick Hollander handed out 42 assists.

Up Next

The Griffins will take on No. 1 Carthage tomorrow for the MCVL Championship after the Red Men swept No. 4 North Central. First-service at 3 p.m.

Fans make sure to stay updated on throughout the year for full updates and recaps on the men's volleyball team.

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