(Nashua, N.H.) The Rivier University Men's Volleyball team earned an impressive straight-set sweep over visiting Elms College this evening in a non-conference matchup of programs received top-15 consideration in the AVCA Coaches Poll inside the Muldoon Gymnasium. The win propels the Raiders' overall record to 9-5 while the Blazers fall to just 8-3. This was the second matchup of the year for these two programs as Elms took round one, 3-0 back on January 20th at the SUNY Poly Invitational.
Rivier won tonight's three set match by set scores of 26-24, 25-23 and 25-21. This marks the 12th consecutive set that the Raiders have won.
A trio of Raiders set the tone offensively for the contest as senior Grant Andler (Chicago. Ill.), senior Matt Heckler (Simi Valley, Calif.) and junior Dashaun Graham (Highland Falls, N.Y.) each had nine kills with Heckler registering a blistering .667 hitting percentage. Senior setter, and recently named Sports Imports/AVCA Division III Player of the Week, Garrett Bucklin (Jamestown, R.I.) dished out 36 assists with five digs and Heckler led the defensive effort along the net as he recorded four total blocks. Junior Dahnny Rogers (Penfield, N.Y.) patrolled the backline with seven digs as sophomore David Smith (Clinton, Ohio) hammered down eight kills in the win,
Elms freshman Jovanny Torres (Juncos, P.R.) was the match-leader with 10 kills and senior Gabriel Reis Levy (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) added nine kills for the Blazers. Junior setter John Dunphy (Farmington, Conn.) handed out 20 assists and freshman Jeremy Torres (Juncos, P.R.) scooped up a match-high nine digs. Senior Qua'Sean Crowe (Stamford, Conn.) had a solid night as he totaled three blocks and four kills.
The Raiders will enjoy the weekend off from college competition as they celebrate their annual Rivier Volleyball Alumni Weekend. The Men's Alumni Game will be at 4:30pm on Saturday afternoon. Elms, meanwhile, will be back in action on Tuesday night as they travel to Dean College for a 7pm game.