AURORA, Ill. – Having locked down their spot in the NACC tournament, the MSOE men's volleyball team entered today's game with one goal in mind moving forward throughout the rest of the regular season: lock down the top spot in said tournament. They moved one step closer towards that goal with their thrilling 3-2 victory over Aurora on Saturday afternoon.
#9 MSOE Raiders – 3 (25, 25, 21, 24, 15)
AU Spartans – 2 (23, 16, 25, 26, 12)
HOW IT HAPPENED
#9 MSOE (16-6, 10-2 NACC) expected a battle out of Aurora (8-10, 7-5 NACC), and they got one. Four out of the five sets were decided by four points or less. Set one was no exception. While they hit .034, the Raiders were able to jump out to an early 7-3 lead, thanks to three quick kills by Jacob Sirny (Brookfield, Wis./East). They fell into some trouble later in the set however, as they allowed the Spartans to go on a 9-2 run to take the lead back at 19-16. Fortunately, the Red & White quickly got it back together winning all but four points from then on to take the first set victory.
AU was a factor in the second frame as well, but with the score 11-9 in favor of MSOE, the Spartans fell apart. Aurora couldn't put back to back points together down the stretch, and the Raiders hit a game high .333 to take the second set 25-16.
The Spartans put things into the next gear after their second loss in a row, rattling off the next two victories. Errors towards the tail end of set three killed the Red & White's hopes of finishing the match off in straight sets, falling 25-21. The fourth frame saw the Raiders lead for almost the entire set but allowed the Spartans to go on a 6-3 run to win in extra points.
Momentum was on Aurora's side heading into the decisive set. However, four errors in a shorted game will not do you any favors. The Raiders were down 10-6 and looking at their first loss in eight games, but a 10-2 run quickly turned things around, seeing MSOE take the fifth and final set 15-12.
TEAM STAT OF THE GAME
With the win today, the Raiders have now won eight straight games, a feat that has been accomplished the past four out of five seasons (2015, 2016, 2017, 2019).
RAIDER STAT TRACKER
Jacob Sirny – 11 kills, .524 hitting percentage
Jake Christensen (Kenosha, Wis./Lakeview Technological Academy) – 13 digs, 3 solo blocks, 2 block assists
Quin Krisik (Itasca, Ill./Itasca)– 40 assists, 7 digs
WHO'S ON DECK?
The Raiders will be heading back home for their second to last match inside Hotchkin Arena. They will welcome Concordia-Wisconsin on Wednesday for a 7:00 pm first serve.