AURORA, N.Y. – Sparked by eight kills from freshmen Torik Gordon (Westmoreland, Jamaica) and Liam Kaylor (Falls Church, Va.), the Wells College men's volleyball team notched a 3-0 victory over the Wildcats of Cazenovia College Tuesday evening at the Frances Tarlton Farenthold Athletic Wing. With the win, the Express even their overall record at 5-5 while improving to 1-0 within the North Eastern Athletic Conference. The Wildcats (0-6, 0-1 NEAC) remain winless on the year.
Wells posted a 3-0 victory in straight sets via scores of 25-9, 25-9 and 25-22. Gordon tied a career-high with eight kills to his credit, adding seven assists and six digs in the winning effort. Kaylor posted eight kills on 20 total attacks, assisting seven of his team's 35 kills while notching six digs in the win. Sophomore Derek Nipps (Turnersville, N.J.) assisted 21 of his team's kills while libero C.J. Bayly (Waymart, Pa.) topped all Wells defenders with nine digs.
In the first set for Wells, a service error by the Express kept the Wildcats in the game as the hosts led by only a five point margin at 12-7. The Express, however, utilized strong serving performances by sophomore John Farruggia (Leonardsville, N.Y.) and freshman Mathew Armlin (Fort Plain, N.Y.) to score 13 of the game's next 15 points. Both players tallied five service aces for the Express down the stretch. The team recorded 16 digs alone in the opening set and hit a collective .400 (12-2-15) to capture the decisive 25-9 first set win.
Following a time out by Cazenovia down 11-5, the Wildcats came out and hammered home a kill from Alec Felitte to cut the score to 11-6. The Express, however, recorded 13 of the game's next 16 total points to secure the middle set victory. With the score 13-7, Farruggia recorded a kill before a strong run of service aces. The sophomore went onto rack up six service aces across the next seven points for Wells, lifting them to a 22-8 lead before an attacking error granted Cazenovia their eighth point of the set.
Collectively, the Express hit a match-worst .029 in the third set to allow the visitors from Cazenovia to tie the match at 22 aside in the waning minutes of the contest. The Express, however, rallied and utilized three-straight Wells kills to secure the victory. Armlin posted three service aces in the third stanza and seven different Wells players recorded at least one dig in the set.
Cazenovia recorded only six kills in the match, including two from Felitte and two from Marcus Delgado. Devin Purcell assisted all six kills while Felitte and Jacob Bitz each tied for the team lead with six digs defensively. Don Radell hammered home one service ace while the Wildcats, as a team, combined for four block assists.
The Express return to action this Saturday, Feb. 15 as they travel to the campus of the SUNY Institute of Technology to compete in matches against the host Wildcats and the Storm of Keuka College. The day kicks off with the first Wells match at 1:00 p.m.