Mastodons sweep NJIT to open volleyball season

College Sports

The No. 14 Purdue Fort Wayne men’s volleyball team took a 3-0 win (25-17, 26-24, 25-20) over the NJIT Highlanders on Friday (Jan. 4). The Mastodons hit .330 in their win on Arnie Ball Court.

Pelegrin Vargas led the Mastodons with a .458 hitting clip (14-3-24) and also pitched in eight digs. His 6-1-8 first set hitting was a major factor, when Purdue Fort Wayne as a team hit .483 in the opening frame. The ‘Dons and Highlanders were tied at 8 before Purdue Fort Wayne opened up a four-point lead and forced an NJIT timeout. Five straight points later on gave the Mastodons a 23-15 advantage before taking the set. NJIT ended the first set with .000 hitting.

Purdue Fort Wayne struggled to open up any significant lead in the second set, never leading by more than two points. NJIT led by three at 14-11, but the ‘Dons pushed back throughout the rest of the set. The Mastodons retook the lead at 21-20 behind a kill from Vargas. After back-and-forth play for the rest of the set, Vargas got a kill and Tony Price got a service ace to end the second frame.

The last set of the night was even until 11-11, but the ‘Dons went on a five-point run to open up a 16-11 lead that NJIT could not take back. It was capped off by RichieDiedrich’s second ace of the night, forcing the NJIT timeout. The Highlanders got no closer than four the rest of the way due to a final percentage of .030 for the third set.

The good hitting by the Mastodons set up Michael Keegan to have a good statistical night, with 40 assists. He also added two kills, six digs and a block.Diedrich had nine kills with a .389 clip while TomasGago had seven kills for .455. Gago team up with Price to have four blocks each. Kolbie Knorr had a good start to his senior season, picking up 10 digs at the libero spot.

The Mastodons held NJIT to .127 hitting for the night, with no hitter garnering more than six kills.

Purdue Fort Wayne improves to 1-0 with the win while NJIT falls to 0-1. The ‘Dons next match is set for Saturday night (Jan. 5) with Princeton at 7 p.m.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories

Don't Miss