BROOKLINE, Mass. – The Newbury College men's volleyball team fell to Elms College, 3-0, to open New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) action, Tuesday evening. Sophomore outside hitter Gabriel Reis Levy (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) led four Blazers in double figure kills with 15 kills en route to their ninth victory of the season.
Newbury came out of the gate red-hot, jumping out in front early. First year setter Luis Aranda (Boyle Heights, Calif.) ignited the crowd with a monster solo block late in the first set to take an 18-12 lead. Moments later, the Western Massachusetts tandem of sophomore Wade Robidoux (Agawam, Mass.) and first year Skyelar Whitehead (Belchertown, Mass.) blocked sophomore outside hitter Daniel Bondarovsky (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) attack attempt.
However, momentum swung over to the Elms bench when junior middle hitter Dervin Dimanche (Queens, N.Y.) ignited an 8-1 run to take a one-point advantage. The Nighthawks hung in their but the Blazers snuck out the first set, 27-25.
Elms took the 2-0 match lead, taking the second set, 25-20. Bondarovsky and senior middle hitter Angel Castro (Carolina, Puerto Rico) combined to register eight kills on 10 attempts in the set for the Blazers.
The Nighthawks were not going away quietly though. Battling back, they were able to grab third set in commanding fashion, 25-18. Junior middle hitter Khalil Paige (Baltimore, Md.) was nearly perfect from the floor leading the team with five kills on seven attempts with just one miscue. First year libero Zach Kaufman (Newton, Mass.) was solid defensively registering four defensive digs.
Cutting the Blazer lead in half, Robidoux put the Nighthawks on his back as he was near perfect in the fourth set, tallying five kills on eight attempts. But the Blazer offense was too much. Levy and Castro combined to notch 11 kills on 23 attempts with just two miscues as they edged out the Nighthawks, 27-25
Robidoux led the Nighthawks posting a .440 attack percentage tallying a team-high 13 kills on 25 attempts with just two errors while going up for two blocks on the night. Aranda and Paige continued to be a dynamic force at the net defensively with two total blocks and tonight they were joined by Whitehead who added two of his own.
Newbury falls to 2-7 and 0-1 in conference play while Elms improves to 9-2 and 1-0 in NECC action. The Nighthawks return to the hard-court Thursday evening when they travel to Weston, Mass. for a 7:00 p.m. tilt with NECC foe Regis College