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Lions' Win Streak Snapped With 3-2 Loss at Thiel; Colditz Breaks Single Match Kills Record

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3/28/2017 — GREENVILLE, Pa. - Penn State Altoona men's volleyball saw its nine-match winning streak come to an end on Tuesday evening when it suffered a 3-2 loss in a back-and-forth non-conference match against Thiel College in the Beeghly Gymnasium.

The Lions (19-5) won a tightly-contested first set 28-26 before Thiel (7-14) bounced back to win the second set 25-23. Penn State Altoona countered with a 25-20 win in the third, but the home team battled back to win the fourth set 28-26 to stay alive. The Tomcats proceeded to prevail 18-16 in the fifth set to take the match.

In the loss, Penn State Altoona's Bradley Colditz (Upper St. Clair, PA/Upper St. Clair) set a new team record for the most kills in a single match, racking up a career-high 25 kills to lead all players Tuesday night. The previous record was 24 kills, which came courtesy of former Lion standout Matt Huey on March 27, 2015 against Hilbert College.

Jacob Byers (Level Green, PA/Penn Trafford) added 16 kills. Daniel Downs (Reading, PA/Daniel Boone) posted a season-high 14 kills to go along with one solo block and three block assists. Brandon Arentz (Mount Wolf, PA/Northeastern) added 11 kills, eight digs, one solo block, and one block assist.

Tommy Kisick (Latrobe, PA/Greater Latrobe) led his team with 36 assists, and he also contributed one solo block and one block assist. Billy Smith (Pittsburgh, PA/Upper St. Clair) recorded 28 assists.

Waldemar Rivera-Berrios (Toa Alta, Puerto Rico/Samuel Clemens) had a match-high 17 digs. Colditz finished second on the team with nine digs.

In the first set, Thiel held a 25-24 lead before the Lions charged back to score four out of the final five points. Two kills from Colditz and two errors by the Tomcats helped Penn State Altoona jump out to a 1-0 lead on the night.

Late in the second set, the score was tied 22-22 after a Thiel service error. But the Tomcats got back-to-back kills from Mitchell Patterson to go up by two points. After Penn State Altoona cut its deficit to one on a Colditz kill, Jacob Burkley helped the home team win the set with a kill of his own.

Penn State Altoona used a big run to overcome a Thiel lead late in the third set. Trailing 19-18, the Lions outscored the Tomcats 7-1 over the remainder of the set to win it. Two kills from Colditz, along with a kill each by Byers and Arentz, accounted for four of Penn State Altoona's points in that stretch.

But Thiel overcame a deficit late in the fourth to even the match score at 2-2. After two errors helped Penn State Altoona to a 25-24 lead, the Tomcats evened things up with a kill from Regan Hess. After Colditz's kill, Burkley tied the score 26-26 with a kill. Patterson and Burkley combined on a block, and an attack error ended the set in favor of Thiel.

In the decisive fifth set, Thiel worked its way to a 13-11 lead before kills Colditz, Byers, and Arentz helped tie the score 14-14. Downs' kill several points later kept the score knotted, 16-16. But Thiel followed with kills from Cody Patterson and Mitchell Patterson to take the fifth set and the match.

Lions volleyball returns to North Eastern Athletic Conference play this Saturday, April 1, competing in a tri-match at Lancaster Bible College to wrap up its regular season conference schedule. Penn State Altoona faces Lancaster Bible at 12:00 p.m., then goes up against Wilson College at 2:00 p.m.


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