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No. 3 Penn State Men’s Volleyball Sweeps Series Against NJIT

Penn State men’s volleyball (13-1, 4-0) silenced NJIT (5-9, 1-2) this weekend in New Jersey to continue its winning streak in EIVA conference play.

Michal Kowal and Cal Fisher led the charge for Penn State, as the Nittany Lions did not drop a set to the Highlanders over the weekend.

How It Happened

Penn State opened up match one flexing its strengths against the Highlanders, just as it finished its series with Princeton last weekend. Cal Fisher recorded two early aces in set one giving the Nittany Lions a 6-4 early lead.

Fisher notched his first kill of the set, giving Penn State a 15-12 advantage before the media timeout. Michal Kowal’s four kills in set one led the way as the blue and white topped the Highlanders 25-20.

In more dominant fashion Owen Rose picked apart the NJIT defense with an ace, followed up by another ace from Brett Wildman. The score was 6-1 early in set two.

Cole Bogner delivered an ace that gave Penn State a 22-18 lead late into set two. Fisher’s third ace of the match finished off the Highlanders after they fought back to lose the set 28-26.

Set three was the Michal Kowal show, which helped Penn State finish off the Highlanders. He recorded his 10th kill of the evening providing Penn State a 13-10 lead.

Fisher joined Kowal with 10 kills apiece and the Nittany Lions had a 20-18 lead over NJIT late into the match. The Highlanders took a timeout to mount a comeback, but nothing could stop Penn State from winning the set 25-23 and the match three sets to none.

Match two on Saturday night began with back-and-forth action. The Nittany Lions jumped out to a 7-5 lead after two kills from Ezeonu. Rose recorded his first kill moments later on a thunderous strike.

Penn State stretched their lead for the first time in the night to 15-11 after multiple miscues by NJIT. The Highlanders called a timeout after two more points recorded by Penn State.

The score was 21-14 after another Ezeonu kill off an NJIT failed block. Penn State continued to dominate the first set of match two, Rose had four kills in the first frame and Penn State won the set 24-17.

Set two began with Penn State continuing to dictate the set. The score was 10-6 after multiple Nittany Lions scored points. Carson Williams did everything he could to get the Highlanders back into the set after multiple blocks early in set two.

Wildman finished off a long rally with a kill, using a soft touch to get the ball over the NJIT defense. Head coach Mark Pavlik challenged the call and won, winning with a score of 17-12.

NJIT gave themselves no help committing multiple service errors late into the second set. In the same alteration as set one, the Highlanders gave Penn State the set victory after a service error.

Penn State jumped out to another lead, just as they embarked on for the entire campaign. The score was 5-3 after multiple points scored by Fisher. NJIT fought back and tied the set all up at 7-7. The Highlanders took their first lead at 9-8.

Rose responded for Pavlik’s team timeout and regained the lead for Penn State at 16-13. Fisher could not secure the dig off a powerful strike by Jack Shampine. The score embarked on a 19-15 advantage after another miscue committed by NJIT.

Penn State won the set 25-20 thanks to Ezeonu finishing the kill, and the Nittany Lions won the match three sets to none for the second straight night.


  • Penn State continued to show why they are the top lions in the EIVA, after a sweep of Princeton, the Nittany Lions followed it up by sweeping the Highlanders.
  • The Nittany Lions proved once again that this team is extremely deep and will be a major contender late into the season. Any one of Pavlik’s stars can show up and take over a match at any point.

What’s Next?

The Nittany Lions will head out west for a round trip with Concordia at 5 p.m. on Saturday, March 4.

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About the Author

CJ Gill

CJ is a freshman from McVeytown, Pennsylvania majoring in broadcast journalism. His entire happiness revolves around PA sports. He can't wait to make a march madness bracket that is sure to fail in just a few months. You can contact him via email at [email protected] or follow him on twitter @CJGill14 and Instagram @cj.gill11.

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