Despite a 22-11 edge in blocks and a 20-kill performance by senior Pat Schwagler, the Princeton men's volleyball team fell to 0-2 during the 2014 season after a 3-2 marathon loss to reigning NAIA champion Concordia.
Princeton, coming off a 3-0 loss to Cal-Baptist the night before, came out with an impressive first set, rallying from an early deficit and controlling the rest of play for a 25-19 win. The Eagles bounced back with wins of 25-22 and 25-21, but Princeton hit .464 in the fourth set for a 25-17 win.
That left the fifth set to determine the match, and the Tigers had the early edge. A three-man block by Devin Stearns, Will Siroky and Chris Kennedy opened a 6-3 lead, while a Concordia attack error later made it 8-5. The Eagles won the next four points to grab a one-point lead, and the two teams stayed within a point until a block moved Concordia to match ball at 14-12. The home team took the match on a kill by Parker Del Re for the 15-12 win.
Schwagler had 20 kills and nine blocks during the match, while Stearns added 14 kills and hit .429. Siroky continued his impressive play in California, recording 11 kills and seven blocks, while hitting .529 for the match. Both Cody Kessel and Junior Oboh added seven kills apiece, while Oboh posted a rare double-digit block performance (10).
Junior libero Tony Ensbury matched his career high with 17 digs, while senior Davis Waddell added 26 assists in the match. Kennedy had 23 assists, while freshman Jonah May added four assists and a pair of service aces in his collegiate debut.
Princeton will make its home debut next weekend, starting with a 7 pm showdown against nationally ranked IPFW on Feb. 7.