Men's Volleyball: #14 Rivier goes 1-2 at Golden Flyer Invitational

Men's Volleyball: #14 Rivier goes 1-2 at Golden Flyer Invitational

(Rochester, N.Y.) The Rivier University Men's Volleyball team returned to action this weekend with a trip to the Golden Flyer Invitational, hosted by Nazareth College. The Raiders went 1-2 over their three game trip with the lone win coming on Friday night against Medaille (3-1). On the second and final day of the invitational, they fell to #2 New Paltz State (3-0) and #6 UC Santa Cruz (3-0).

Game One: #14 Rivier University 3, Medallie College 0 (Final)

The Raiders came out on fire in their first match of the week as they downed Medaille in four sets by scores of 25-22, 25-14, 22-25 and 25-20.

Sophomore Grant Andler (Chicago, Ill.) registered a .565 hitting percentage as he led the offensive attack with 14 kills. Senior Ian Wolski (Westfield, Mass.) contributed with 11 kills and and three total blocks while sophomore Khayen Yocca (Pittsburgh, Pa.) added seven kills and nine total blocks in the win. Senior setter Matt LaSance (Madison, Conn.) dished out 37 assists and junior libero Garrett Bucklin collected a team-high nine digs along the back line.

The Mavericks were led by Calvin Crosby's game-high 21 kills and Matt Dempsey's game-high of 41 assists.

Game Two: #2 New Paltz State University 3, #14 Rivier University 0 (Final)

The second day of action for the Raiders began with a battle against the #2 ranked team in the country, New Paltz State University. Rivier was swept in the three set match by scores of 25-18, 25-22 and 25-16.

Sophomore Nathan Kunkel (Plum Borough, Pa.) was the leader in the contest for Rivier as he knocked down eight kills and recorded a .545 hitting percentage. Wolski also had eight kills and Yocca finished with four and three total blocks. LaSance registered 22 assists and Bucklin collected 10 kills in the quick three set match.

New Paltz State saw Jake Roessler and Anthony Bonilla combine for 21 kills and Matthew Grace accumulate 34 assists in the win for the Hawks.

Game Three: #6 UC Santa Cruz 3, #14 Rivier University 0 (Final)

In yet another matchup featuring AVCA Top 15 teams, the Banana Slugs of UC Santa Cruz swept the Raiders by scores of 25-14, 25-19 and 25-23. This was the first time these two programs have met since Rivier's thrilling five set win at Santa Cruz in 2014.

Andler was the Raiders' team leader with eleven kills with junior Matt Heckler (Simi Valley, Calif.) knocking down seven kills and a .357 hitting percentage. LaSance once again directed the offense with 25 assists and Bucklin recorded six digs on the defensive end of the court.

For the Banana Slugs, Jake Howard was the overall kill leader with 10 however Kyle Donohoe and Justin Fortner were right behind him with nine and eight kills, respectively. Ryan McLaughlin totaled 39 assists and Jonathan Santos registered 10 digs.

Post-Tournament, Rivier's Grant Andler was selected to the Golden Flyer Invitational All-Tournament Team.


The Raiders, who are now 3-5 overall on the season, will open up Great Northeast Athletic Conference play with a Thursday night contest at #5 Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston, Mass. Game time is set for 7pm.