MARCY, N.Y. – Powered by a career-high 17 kills by sophomore John Farruggia (Leonardsville, N.Y.), the Wells College men's volleyball team posted a thrilling 3-2 victory over the Storm of Keuka College on Saturday after posting a 3-0 loss to the host Wildcats of the SUNY Institute of Technology. Following both matches, the Express' overall record stands at 6-6 on the year. Within North Eastern Athletic Conference play, Wells stands at 2-1 exiting play on Saturday.
Against Keuka, the Express were able to post the five set victory via set scores of 22-25, 25-19, 30-28, 22-25 and 15-9. After three sets, the Express had a 2-1 lead in the match following a thrilling 30-28 victory in the midpoint of the match. Keuka battled back with a strong fourth set before the Express were able to set down and outlast the Storm with a 15-9 in the decisive final set.
Wells turned up the heat in the fifth and final set, racking up nine kills and zero errors in 13 total attacks for a .692 attack percentage (9-0-13) in the set. Today's 3-2 win was the second-ever fifth set victory for the Express and their final stanza attack percentage was the highest in team history in a fifth set. In addition, Wells posts their first-ever victory against the reigning NEAC champions from Keuka.
Farruggia posted the second-highest amount of single game kills in team history, hammering home 17 kills against the Storm across five sets. The Wells sophomore also recorded a double-double, posting 11 digs defensively in the match. Sophomore J.J. Podczasy (Macungie, Pa.) ranked second with 15 kills while also providing eight digs for Wells. Sophomore Derek Nipps (Turnersville, N.J.) posted the second-highest amount of assists in team history, assisting 46 of his team's 50 kills in the match.
Defensively, the Express were led by libero C.J. Bayly (Waymart, Pa.) and his 14 digs across five sets. Freshman Liam Kaylor (Falls Church, Va.) also had a strong game for Wells, notching 12 kills and only four errors in 31 total attacks for a .258 hitting percentage (12-4-31). As a team, Wells posted seven total blocks.
In the opening match on the afternoon, the Express lost in straight sets to the host Wildcats of SUNYIT via scores of 25-22, 25-16 and 25-23. Wells was led by Farruggia and his eight kills across 24 total attacks. Nipps assisted 14 of his team's 20 total kills while Bayly posted seven digs defensively.
The Express did not have any players hit in negative figures, but the Wildcats took a commanding lead in the second set. Wells recorded only two kills against two errors and allowed the Wildcats to take the easy 25-16 set win.
The Express return to action on Friday, Feb. 21 as they face-off against Sarah Lawrence and Bard on the latter's campus beginning at 6:00 p.m.