April 16, 2011

Balanced Attack Ends Pioneer Season on High Note; SHU Downs Princeton, 3-1

Princeton, NJ - Four Pioneers recorded double-digit kills as the SHU men's volleyball team closed out the 2011 campaign with a 3-1 victory over Princeton Saturday afternoon.  Enzo Mackenzie (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) led the way for Sacred Heart with 15 kills followed by 13 kills from Bradley Borsay (Richmond, RI) while Patrick Sibley (Valley Center, CA) and Roger Parent (Burlington, CT) both added 10 kills of their own.  Parent and Mackenzie also supplied 10 digs a piece to notch double-doubles in the season finale.

Princeton (4-18) started off extremely strong and posted a blistering .536 hitting percentage in the first set on 18 kills, 3 errors, and 28 attempts.  SHU also came out firing in the opening set, hitting .423 and tallying 14 kills.  However, the Tigers' Vincent Tuminelli's nine kills in the first frame proved too much for the Pioneers as Princeton claimed the set, 25-21.  Tuminelli was dominant all afternoon and finished with a match high 26 kills along with a .510 hitting mark.

Sacred Heart (13-9) took advantage of four consecutive Tiger miscues to build an early 10-5 edge in the second set.  Mackenzie had his most productive game of the day with six kills and one block.  Princeton battled back into the set and knotted it at 20-20 on a SHU service error.  From there the Tigers came within one point of going up 2-0 overall as a Tuminelli kill gave Princeton two set points, 24-22.  The Pioneers came charging back and leveled the score line at 24-24 on back-to-back kills from Mackenzie and Borsay.  The next two points both ended on Princeton hitting errors as Sacred Heart stole the set 26-24 and evened the match 1-1. 

The Pioneers used a 10-4 run in the middle of the third set to take a commanding 17-9 lead.  Sibley put down four kills in the set, the freshman middle did not make an error in the match and posted a .588 hitting percentage.  Senior Tim Sadowski (Salem, NH) efficiently directed the offense and dished out 13 of his 43 total assists.  Sibley hammered home the final point of the set as SHU won the third, 25-20. 

Sacred Heart used another streak of solid play to build an 18-11 cushion in the fourth set.  However, the Tigers would not go quietly in their final match of the season, cutting the deficit to just two points, 22-20.  Craig Harvey (Beverly, MA) posted three of his total nine digs in the set to anchor the Pioneer defense.  SHU held off Princeton down the stretch and Mackenzie put down the final point of 2011 to end the set 25-22 and give Sacred Heart the 3-1 triumph.

The win was the final match for the Pioneers six graduating seniors: Sadowski, Parent, Harvey, Josef Sauer (Okemos, MI), Jon Mercado (Corona, NY), and Will Kelleher (Providence, RI).