Bulldogs Take Down Panthers in Historic Senior Night

The 2019 Senior Class (standing) poses with their parents, the team, and the coaching staff after Friday's 3-1 win over Greenville on senior night (Photo by Mike Dickie).
The 2019 Senior Class (standing) poses with their parents, the team, and the coaching staff after Friday's 3-1 win over Greenville on senior night (Photo by Mike Dickie).

ADRIAN, Mich. – The Adrian College men's volleyball team picked up its 16th win of the season by defeating Greenville University 3-1 on Friday, April 5. The team celebrated its four seniors at the conclusion of the match, with three of them being a part of all four years the program has been competing at the varsity level. The four graduating seniors honored after the match were Tyler PorrasMike GoldEduardo Aleman, and Michael Burkhardt.

THE BASICS

Final Score: Adrian 3, Greenville 1 (25-21, 25-17, 20-25, 25-19)

Location: Adrian, Mich. (Merillat Sport and Fitness Center)

Records: AC 16-13 (4-4 MCVL), GU 9-15 (1-7 MCVL)

HOW IT HAPPENED

It was back and forth in the first set, with neither team able to gain an advantage for most of the set. Each time one of the squads led by a point, the other was there with the next point to tie it up again. This went on until Adrian won four in a row to open an 18-14 lead. The set wouldn't be tied again, as the Bulldogs held the lead for the 25-21 set win.

The second set was the same as the first, but the ties lasted a point longer, with the teams knotted at 15. AC then won eight of the next nine points to gain a 23-16 lead. Greenville only won one more point as junior setter Joseph Campana served up an ace to give the Black and Gold a 2-0 lead in the match with a 25-17 victory in set two.

Greenville came out strong in the third set, jumping out to a 4-0 lead in the set and extending it to as much as eight, 14-6. The set was only tied at the beginning, 0-0, as Adrian couldn't slow down the Panthers as they hit .519 to take the third set 25-20 to extend the match.

Late into the fourth set it looked like the match might be heading for a fifth set, with Greenville leading most of the way and holding an 18-16 lead late. A service error by the Panthers gave Aleman the serve and he served five more times as the Bulldogs rattled off six straight to take the lead, 22-18. Just like the second set, Greenville would only get one more point in the midst of an Adrian run as Burkhardt's service ace capped off the senior night victory for the Bulldogs.

Serving was the story of the match, with Adrian picking up nine services aces as a team. That is good enough to set a program record for most service aces in a match, eclipsing the old mark of seven set last year and tied earlier this year in a match against Olivet. Junior Noah Marcinkowski

TOP DOGS

• Marcinkowski led the team with 16 kills and four service aces and Burkhardt added 13 kills and one ace, the match-winning point. Adrian's nine service aces as a team is a new program record

• Campana finished the match with 41 sets, the 12th time he's had 40 or more helpers in a match. Campana picked up his 1,000th assist on the year in the match, becoming the first Bulldog to reach that milestone. He's currently in the top-20 in the nation for assists per set.

• Marcinkowski had 15 digs to lead the defense, while junior Kevin Curley had 13. Curley's defense has been stellar all year, as he set a new school record for digs and is currently in the top-10 in digs per set in the nation this year, as is the team.

THE OPPOSITION

• Four Panthers had double digit kills, with Kyle Ward leading the way with 15.

• Tanner Smith recorded 52 assists.

• Smith also led the team in digs, finishing with 13.

UP NEXT

Despite this match being senior night, Adrian finishes its season tomorrow with a match against the MCVL's second-ranked team – Fontbonne. First serve is scheduled for 1 p.m.

 

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