HIRAM, Ohio – Penn State Altoona men's volleyball was handed a 3-0 loss by Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference opponent Hiram College on Saturday afternoon at the Price Gymnasium.
The Lions (8-10, 2-6 AMCC) were unable to overcome an efficient offensive performance by the home team, as Hiram committed just nine attack errors as a team while compiling a .356 attack percentage.
Hiram (4-18, 1-7 AMCC) swept the Lions by scores of 25-21, 25-23, and 25-20.
Brian Sheddy (Shrewsbury, PA/Susquehannock) recorded a match-high four service aces, and he led the Lions with eight kills to go along with 11 digs. Frank Perehinec (Altoona, PA/Altoona) finished with six kills, and Ben Beaver (Hummelstown, PA/Lower Dauphin) and Dan Downs (Douglassville, PA/Daniel Boone) had five kills apiece.
Downs also led Penn State Altoona with three total blocks, posting two block assists and one solo block. Beaver and Jon Ramsey (Pittsburgh, PA/Shaler) each finished with one solo block, while Sheddy and Tanner Yaw (Palmyra, PA/Palmyra) added one block assist each.
Tyler Chan (Framingham, MA/Framingham) led all players in the match with 12 digs for the Lions. Whiteman added three digs, and Beaver, Dry, and Ramsey chipped in two digs apiece.
Penn State Altoona dug itself into a big hole to start the match, as Hiram jumped out to an 8-0 lead in the opening set. The Terriers maintained a strong lead throughout the set, keeping it at an eight-point difference after Tom Supan's ace made it 22-14. Penn State Altoona used a 6-1 run to narrow the gap to three points, 23-20, getting kills from Sheddy and Perehinec and a combo block from Downs and Sheddy during that stretch. But a Lions service error and a kill from Andrew Gard closed out the set for Hiram.
In the second set, the Lions avoided getting stuck with an early deficit, as two kills from Beaver and an ace by Dry helped Penn State Altoona stay even with Hiram, 6-6. But the Terriers pulled away, outscoring the Lions 16-10 to stake out a 22-16 advantage in the set. Penn State Altoona rallied for a 7-1 run that tied the score 23-23, getting three kills and an ace from Sheddy during the run. But after a Hiram timeout, the Terriers scored the next two points on a Dangelo Boehner kill and combo block by Andrew Diaz and Kilvio Montero.
Hiram took an early lead in the third set and was able to hold on to a modest advantage throughout the game, never allowing Penn State Altoona to tie or jump ahead. The Terriers took their largest lead of the set in the latter stages, when Gard's kill put his team up by eight points, 23-15. Penn State Altoona again used a late run to narrow the score differential, reeling off five straight points to make it 23-20. In that run, the Lions benefitted from a pair of aces from Sheddy, a block by Downs and Yaw, and a kill from Nathaniel Reinert (State College, PA/State College). But, just as in the second set, Hiram called a timeout and then proceeded to the score the final two points to finish the set and the match.
Penn State Altoona men's volleyball's next matches will be on Saturday, March 23, when the Lions will travel to Chambersburg, Pa. to face their former league opponents Keuka College and Wilson College from the North Eastern Athletic Conference. That day at Wilson, the Lions will play Keuka at 2:00 p.m. and face the host Phoenix at 4:00 p.m.