When Sam Shweisky looked at his season-opening eight-match road trip, he knew it would test his team's resolve. The Princeton men's volleyball team passed that test with flying colors, and it punctuated the effort with a 3-0 sweep of second-place St. Francis Saturday night.
Princeton improved to 4-4 overall, 3-2 in the EIVA, with the 25-23, 33-31, 25-21 victory Saturday night. After winning only one road match all of last season, the Tigers have now won three road matches in the first three weeks of league play.
"Scott Liljestrom did a great job with leadership this weekend," Shweisky said. "He kept our team focused and driven. He is doing an outstanding job leading us this season."
Facing several pressure-packed situations, including a trio of set balls in the marathon second set, Princeton handled each moment with poise. Freshman Cody Kessel, who led Princeton with 13 kills, fought off the first two set balls with kills. After a service error by the Red Flash evened the set at 31, Princeton got a Kessel kill and an attack error to build a 2-0 lead. Princeton carried that momentum into the third set and never trailed in a 25-21 win.
Junior Michael Dye completed his best weekend of the season with 10 kills, five digs and four blocks, while freshman middle Will Siroky added seven kills and four blocks in the middle. Outside Davis Waddell recorded six kills and hit .714, while middle Brad Howard added two kills and a block.
Liljestrom, who is hoping to complete his senior season with another trip to the EIVA final, led Princeton with 34 assists and two digs. He helped Princeton hit .365 for the match, including .526 in a dominant third set.
Having completed its brutal opening trip, Princeton will now look forward to a long homestand. Starting Tuesday night against EIVA rival Rutgers-Newark, the Tigers will play 12 of their next 13 matches in Dillon Gym, including all seven of their league matches.