Marauders men produce straight set over Paladins

Hamilton, Ont. – The McMaster men’s volleyball team took down the visiting Royal Military College Paladins on Friday night at Burridge Gymnasium. Winning the match in three straight sets, the Marauders set scores were 25-17, 25-12, 25-16.

With an early 6-2 lead for McMaster, an RMC block on Jori Mantha (Vanier, Ont.) would put them with three but that’s as close as they would get all set. A big kill from Kevin Stevens (Winnipeg, M.B.) from the back row would put the Marauders back up by four and they would continue to dominate throughout the set. Tough serves throughout the set resulted in a number of shanks from the Paladins.

After the technical timeout with the Marauders up 16-9 thanks to a block from Mantha on the outside, McMaster’s middles started to put up good numbers towards the first set win. The lead got as large as 10 points at 21-11 with a few missed serves from the visiting team. A big block in the middle by Ian Cooper (Edmonton, Alta.) would make it 23-13. The Paladins called a timeout at that point abut it wouldn’t help as the Marauders finished off the set with two more points for the 25-13 win.

In the second, the Marauders would score six straight before RMC put a point on the board. A number of mistakes from the Paladins allowed McMaster to dominate. Cooper would stretch the Marauders lead to nine with a kill from an RMC overpass and at the technical timeout the scoreboard would read 16-5. McMaster cruised to the end of the set, allowing RMC to score only seven more points after the timeout. The set would end with a kill from middle Michael Sjonnesen (Cambridge, Ont.) at 25-12. Cooper would have a game-high eight points going into the third.

In the third, Chris Spack (Orleans, Ont.) would come in to set in replacement of Austin Campion-Smith (Bowmanville, Ont.). With the help of two different setters as well as contribution for middles Cooper and Sjonnesen, the Marauders would easily defeat the Paladins in the last set of the game 25-16 on a kill from Cooper in the middle.

Outside hitter Daniel Groenveld (Welland, Ont.) would record a game-high 12 kills and an ace for 13 points. Cooper would add another eight kills, one ace and three blocks for 12 points and Sjonnesen would earn another six kills and two blocks for the Marauders. Setter Spack was named the Big Mac Player of the Game for McMaster, recording 16 assists.

For RMC, the Big Mac Player of the Game was Eric Hawn (London, Ont.). Tyler Leknois (Kingston, Ont.) recorded a team-high nine kills for the Paladins.

The Marauders host the Queen’s Gaels on Saturday night at 8:00 p.m.