New Haven, Conn. – The Albertus Magnus College men's volleyball team defeated visiting Brooklyn College, 3-1, on Wednesday evening in non-conference action at The Nest inside the Cosgrove Marcus Messer Athletic Center. The Falcons avenged a setback on the road versus the Bulldogs last time out by earning a 26-24, 14-25, 25-23 and 25-21 triumph.
Albertus Magnus picked up its first win of the season to improve to 1-2 on the year, while Brooklyn saw its two-game winning streak come to an end to drop to 4-7 overall.
It was a career day for AMC freshman setter Jeremy Ortiz (Bridgeport, Conn.), as he recorded 36 assists, seven digs and six kills to lead the Falcons. The hosts also received strong contests from seniors Justin Tharau (Burlington, Conn.) and Ben Spilka (Redding, Conn.). Tharau registered a double-double with a team-high 17 kills and 10 digs, while Spilka produced 10 kills. On the defensive side of the ball, senior Connor Filkins (Wallingford, Conn.) and junior Josh Turner (Trumbull, Conn.) combined for 10 of the team's 11 blocks.
It was a two-headed attack for the Bulldogs, as Vaughn Titus and Rudy Zhao combined for 32 kills and 21 digs. Titus recorded a game-high 19 kills on a .267 attack percentage, while Zhao had a double-double thanks to a 13-kill, 12-dig performance. Freshman setter Sayuj Zachariah did an excellent job of distributing the ball, dishing out a match-best 45 assists.
The Falcons broke a 24-24 tie in the first set with the final two points of the frame to take an early 1-0 lead. With Brooklyn serving, Turner recorded a kill for AMC to give the hosts the serve and game-point. On the ensuing rally, Filkins blocked a Bulldog attack attempt to put the game away.
The Bulldogs answered in the second set, jumping out to an early 15-10 edge and never looking back en route to tying the match at one.
Albertus Magnus took a 2-1 edge by scoring the final three points in the third set. Trailing by one at 23-22, the hosts tied the game on a Bulldog service error. With Spilka at the service line, Tharau registered a kill and the Bulldogs committed an attack error as AMC headed to the fourth frame with the lead.
Down the stretch, the Falcons pulled away once again in the fourth stanza to seal the victory. With the score knotted at 20, Albertus Magnus scored five of the final six points capped by a Spilka kill to earn the victory.
Albertus Magnus returns to action on Saturday, February 13, with a road non-conference against Medgar Evers at 2:00 pm in the Empire State.