HUNTINGDON, Pa.-The Juniata men's volleyball team almost climbed all the way out of a 2-0 hole but ultimately fell, 3-2 (26-28, 24-26, 25-18, 25-23, 10-15) to #11 Southern Virginia, Friday evening in Memorial Gymnasium.
The first two sets saw the Eagles hold late leads that they could not hold on to as Southern Virginia first came back from trailing 22-19 to take the opener. The Knights took the next four points to make it 22-23, which forced an Eagle timeout. A Joe Fick (Venetia, Pa. / Peters Township) solo block tied things at 23-23, and Juniata continued to chase Southern Virginia as they fought off set point three times via kills from Fick and Kevin Duffy (Carlisle, Pa. / Carlisle HS) along with an SVU service error. A service error by Juniata and a final kill ended set one, 26-28 in favor of the visitors.
In the second set, a kill from Michael Young (Westlake Village, Calif. / Westlake Village) had JC up 23-19 before a 4-0 Knight run tied things up. Another Fick kill put the Eagles at set point, but the Knights took the final three points to go up two sets to zero.
Trailing 2-5 early, two kills from Fick and another two from Leland Hacecky (Ashburn, Va. / Stone Bridge), a service ace from Young and an attack error by the Knights had Juniata ahead 8-5. Juniata continued to dominate as the run wound up at 16-3 as Southern Virginia called their second timeout to try and curb the run. The Knights managed to get within seven but a Quinn Peterson (Las Vegas, Nev. / Shadow Ridge) kill took set three for the Blue and Gold, 25-17.
The fourth set followed the same pattern of one and two at first as the teams were tight most of the way as the Knights pulled even at 17-17. Kills from Peterson, Duffy and Fick paired with a Peterson ace made it 21-17 as the Eagles looked to take control. Juniata reached set point, 24-19, before the Knights again made them sweat as they got within one, 24-23. But the Eagles didn't fold, as Peterson again smashed a kill to end set four, 25-23 to force a decisive fifth set.
The Knights jumped out to a 2-8 lead early and the Eagles never totally recovered. With the score at 5-12, an SVU attack error, a block by Duffy and Peterson and a big kill from Duffy made it 8-12. Juniata got no closer as SVU won 15-10 to take the match.
The Eagles now sit at 1-2 in CVC play. They will host EMU, tomorrow at 7:00.