MOUNT OLIVE, NC- The Pfeiffer men’s volleyball team (8-10, 5-4 CC) dropped its second straight contest, this time falling to Mount Olive (8-9, 7-3) by a final score of 3-1. With a win, the Falcons would have been in sole possession of second place but instead were passed in the standings by the Trojans. Sophomore Sonny Hirini paced the Falcons offensively with 14 kills but Pfeiffer was undone by 22 attack errors and 19 service errors on the night.
Michael Brewer added 13 kills for Pfeiffer and Fabio Diniz ended a productive evening with 12 kills and a .417 hitting percentage. Junior David Specian handed out 42 assists and sophomore Kevin Ecklund had nine digs in the losing effort.
Angel Dache led all players with 18 kills and teammate Steven Cruse added 16 for the Trojans who ended a two-game losing streak with the win. Keaton Marin was solid defensively, recording 15 digs and Quaid Marin quarterbacked the offense with 52 assists.
The first game may have been the turning point as each team had multiple chances to come away with the victory. Pfeiffer had game point on three separate occasions but couldn’t close out the hosts. Hirini’s kill gave Pfeiffer a 25-24 lead but Dache responded with a kill of his own. After Dache’s service error, the Falcons had their second chance at a win, but Cruse netted a kill to even the score. Brewer’s kill on a blocking error by the Trojans put Pfeiffer ahead 28-27, but Evan Blair’s service error gave the Trojans a new life. Mount Olive was able to outlast Pfeiffer and come away with a 31-29 win.
The Falcons bounced right back in the second game and Specian’s kill gave Pfeiffer the 25-22 victory. However, Mount Olive would rally to take the third and fourth sets by scores of 21-25 and 22-25 respectively.
For the match, Pfeiffer posted a .246 hitting percentage, while Mount Olive finished with a .271 hitting percentage. The Trojans held a 43-28 advantage in digs and finished with 57 kills. Pfeiffer won the battle at the net, recording a 14-8.5 led in total blocks.
The Falcons will look to stop this brief two game losing streak when they host Princeton in non-conference action on Monday night at 7 p.m. in Merner Gym.