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Eagles Volleyball Knocks Off Second-Ranked NYU

(Posted March 19, 2006)

Nate Ocasio led all players with 15 kills and tied for the team lead with six digs as the Eagles topped second-ranked NYU.

Juniata 3, New York 0

NEW YORK, N.Y. ? The Juniata College men?s volleyball team shook off a disappointing five-game loss the previous night and cemented its spot at the top of Division III as the top-ranked Eagles downed second-ranked New York University 3-0 in New York Sunday afternoon. The Eagles snapped a three-match losing streak an improved to 7-9 overall and 3-6 in the EIVA Tait Division with the win. NYU fell to 7-11 on the season and 0-10 in the conference.

Nate Ocasio (Northeastern/Manchester) paced all players with 15 kills while Juniata hit an impressive .422 as a team in the win. The Eagles claimed the match by game scores of 30-17, 30-26 and 30-23. The win was Juniata?s 18th-consecutive victory over a Division III opponent.

Juniata controlled game one from the start as a Glenn DeHaven (Walt Whitman/South Huntington, N.Y.) kill was part of an early run that put Juniata in front 14-5. Juniata never let the home team back into the game, closing the 30-17 win on a Matt Werle (Meadville/Meadville) service ace.

Leading most of the way in game two, Juniata held off a late rally to claim the win. A Cordt Withum (Penn Manor/Holtwood) put Juniata in front 27-23 and the senior then followed with an ace for a five-point lead. NYU countered with kills from Jon Wintermeyer and Macnair Sillick and then a Juniata attack error to pull within two. That was as close as the Violets got after an attack error and then a double block from DeHaven and Matt Fritz (John Carroll/Churchville, Md.) sealed the win.

Game three followed a similar script as game one with Juniata running out to a big lead and never looking back. Early kills from Jeremy Barndt (Souderton/Souderton) and Fritz propelled Juniata to an early 7-2 lead. NYU would never get closer than four points the rest of the game as a late service run from Steve Yearger (Hempfield/Landisville) helped close the 30-23 win.

Ocasio finished with 15 kills with an impressive .455 hitting percentage while adding a team-high six digs. Withum and Fritz both added eight finishes for the Juniata offense. Werle passed out 39 assists and tossed two aces to lead the team. Withum and Fritz both posted four blocks defensively, while Casey Dale (Cochranton/Cochranton) matched Ocasio with six digs.

Sillick led New York with 14 finishes, while Chris Schmidt chipped in 11. Marc Horowitz directed the Violets? offense with 35 assists, and also finished with a team-high four blocks. David Tener brought up six digs to lead the team.

Juniata returns to action on Friday with a match at Division III rival Springfield.

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.