Volleyball Dispatches Nazareth, Bard to Get Back on Track


via gonyuathletics.com

Colin LaPorte helped NYU win over Nazareth College and Bard College in Brooklyn.

Michael Thompson, Sports Editor

It’s been a rocky season so far for the NYU men’s volleyball season, but that didn’t stop the 15th-ranked Violets from taking two in the UVC Crossover on Saturday, handily defeating Nazareth College and Bard College in Brooklyn.

The team quickly welcomed the crowd of approximately 100 fans who assembled for a Violet Nation Giveaway with a solid 3-1 win over Nazareth. The Violets got off to a hot start, taking the first two sets 25-17 and 25-19. Senior captain Nick Benson drew first blood in the first set with a kill, and the Violets didn’t look back, jumping out to a 13-4 lead. Nazareth failed to make it much of a contest, getting only as close as six points before the Violets took the set. Nazareth led for a good portion of the second set, holding a 12-11 lead before NYU took control with an 8-4 run to put them ahead for good. Nazareth stayed alive in the third with a tighter 25-20 win, but it wasn’t enough as the Violets comfortably finished the match with a fourth set 25-14 win.

As expected, the Violets led in every important team category. The team had seven more kills than Nazareth (52-45), dominated in aces (9-3) and edged Nazareth in assists (49-44). Even with 14 errors, NYU controlled the action enough to win comfortably.

Benson led the team with 14 kills, but junior outside hitter Chase Klein wasn’t far behind with 13 of his own. Benson also finished with 5 service aces, while Klein and senior opposite Phil Bueno combined for four more. Junior setter Derrick Chiu tallied 40 assists.

“It was a good day to get back in form for the final stretch of the season and give us a good seed in the UVC tournament,” Bueno said. “It was a great team effort.”

The Violets were even more dominant against Bard, sweeping them in three sets. The result was never in question, with the Violets handily winning the first two sets 25-14. Bard put up a fight in the third, keeping it close near the final portion of the frame. But with a narrow 18-17 lead, the Violets scored three consecutive points — a combination of kills and an error — to establish an insurmountable lead. A kill from freshman middle hitter Brendan Duggan finished off Bard and officially put the Violets over .500 for the season.

The Violets were even more dominant against Bard, finishing with wide margins in most statistical categories. They finished with 38 kills, 15 more than their opponents. They also bested Bard in aces (5-2), blocks (4-2), digs (34-22) and digs (29-16).

Different faces led the Violets, but with the same successful result. Senior opposite Colin LaPorte led the team with 13 kills, while junior libero Jake Getz and freshman middle hitter Ethan Talkov combined for 12. Chiu once again led with 28 assists, but also finished with game-high 11 digs.

Back to a respectable 12-11, the Violets will look to keep up the pace against Rutgers University-Newark on Tuesday.

A version of this article appeared in the March 28 print edition. Email Michael Thompson at [email protected].