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Men's Volleyball Falls to No. 3 Dominican (Ill.) and No. 12 Juniata (Pa.) on the Road

Brandon Long (photo courtesy of Dustin Johnson '24)
Brandon Long (photo courtesy of Dustin Johnson '24)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. – The Baldwin Wallace University men's volleyball team was on the road at Juniata College to face No. 3 nationally-ranked Dominican (Ill.) University and No. 12 nationally-ranked Juniata in two non-conference matches. The Yellow Jackets fell to Dominican in three sets by score of 25-20, 25-12, and 25-23. BW also fell in straight sets to Juniata by set scores of 25-20, 25-21, and 25-22.

Match 1 vs. Dominican

The Yellow Jackets (0-2) were tied early with the Stars (2-0) at 8-8 until a Dominican 10-3 run put the Stars up 18-11. With BW closing in on the gap and going on a run of its own, the Stars outlasted the Yellow Jackets, taking set one 25-20.

It was a Dominican-dominant set two as the Stars led 12-6 early. Out of a BW timeout, a huge kill by freshman right side hitter Michael Devlin (Zelienople, Pa./Seneca Valley) gave the Yellow Jackets some momentum. It wasn't enough to carry through the set as BW dropped the second by a 25-12 score.

The two teams shared a very close third set as it was point-for-point. BW called timeout down just one point (22-23) to the Stars. Devlin had another big kill out of the break to tie it at 23 a piece before Dominican notched the final two points to earn the set and match win.

BW was led by Devlin as he tallied 13 kills. Sophomore setter Brandon Long (Hinckley/Metea Valley, Ill.) dished 24 assists and added five digs and a kill. Sophomore All-MCVL outside hitter Michael Beard (Hilliard/Darby) finished with four kills, four total blocks, and two digs.

Match 2 vs. Juniata

BW (0-3) gave the Eagles (3-2) a tough match as there were back-and-forth short runs by both teams all three sets. The Yellow Jackets were within three points late in the first (21-18) before two errors by BW gave the Eagles a 23-18 advantage. Scoring two points each, the squads concluded set one, Juniata earning the 25-20 win.

The Yellow Jackets found themselves down just three points (14-17) midway through set two before Juniata had back-to-back kills to put them up five (19-14), forcing a BW timeout. The Yellow Jackets created some powerful offense themselves, tallying three kills in the final points, but couldn't come closer than three points as Juniata grabbed the set two win by a 25-21 score.

BW grabbed the early lead in game three, 10-7. Two straight points from Juniata brought the Yellow Jacket edge to just one as the teams battled back-and-forth the rest of the set. The Eagles eventually earned the set (25-22) and match win.

The Yellow Jackets were led in match two by Beard as he posted 10 kills. Devlin finished with eight kills and six digs. Long tallied 28 assists while adding three digs. Sophomore outside hitter Nick Irelan (Powell/Olentangy Liberty) posted seven kills (.455) and added two digs. 

BW returns to play next Saturday, January 29 as it hosts Millikin (Ill.) University in a non-conference showdown. First serve is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. in Ursprung Gymnasium inside the Lou Higgins Center.