(Posted March 25, 2006)

Rutgers-Newark 3, Juniata 1

NEWARK, N.J. ? After claiming a first-game victory, the Juniata College men?s volleyball team was unable to maintain its momentum as the Eagles dropped a 3-1 EIVA Tait Division match to Rutgers-Newark in Newark, N.J. Saturday evening. Juniata dropped to 8-10 with the loss and 3-7 in the EIVA Tait, while Rutgers-Newark improved to 9-14 on the year and 5-4 in Tait Division play.

Juniata claimed game one 30-23, but then saw its offense stymied the rest of the way as Rutgers-Newark claimed the final three games by scores of 30-19, 30-20, 30-22.

The Eagles were in control throughout game one, as a pair of early kills from Nate Ocasio (Northeastern/Manchester) put the visitors on top 13-7. Juniata continued to roll, as Ocasio and Barndt both had four kills in the game to help Juniata earn the win.

But from there, the story was Rutgers-Newark?s defense as the home team limited Juniata to just a -.010 hitting percentage over the final three games. The home team wracked up a season-high 20 blocks in the match, which led to Juniata hitting just .069 as a team.

Ocasio finished with a team-high 14 kills for the Blue and Gold, while Barndt added 10. Ocasio and Matt Werle (Meadville/Meadville) each finished with two serve aces, while Werle also passed out 38 assists. Matt Fritz (John Carroll/Churchville, Md.) paced the Eagles with 11 digs, while Barndt was tops with four blocks.

Brian Honsberger led all players with 17 kills in the match, while Danny McGowan added 14 and Eric Honsberger chipped in 13. Eric Honsberger also led all players with 11 blocks in the match. Mark Hulse dished out 52 assists for the home team, while Derek Wolfe contributed 11 digs.

Juniata will be back in action on Wednesday, when the Eagles host EIVA Tait foe Saint Francis (Pa.).


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Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.