WESTON, Mass. – Regis College was taken the distance by Eastern Nazarene College both in terms of overall sets, as a deciding fifth set was needed, and in the final set, as extra points had to be played, but the Pride was able to pull out a 3-2 victory (25-12, 16-25, 25-15, 23-25, 16-14) over the Lions Thursday night in a non-conference men's collegiate volleyball match at Higgins Court.
Matt Ferrara (Haverhill, Mass.) notched his first career double-double, leading the Pride with 18 kills and 14 digs, plus he collected two service aces and five total blocks. Fellow newcomer Kostea Andreenko (Marstons Mills, Mass.) finished with 10 kills and seven total blocks, Inelson Alves (Brockton, Mass.) contributed nine kills, nine digs, and two block assists, and Drew Beimel (Redondo Beach, Calif.) added eight kills and 10 digs to the winning effort.
Eastern Nazarene (2-2) took a 5-3 lead in the final set on a kill by Tim Eddings, but Regis went on a 9-2 scoring run, capped by a service ace by Fernando Gomez (San Juan, Puerto Rico), to pull ahead, 12-7. A block by Andreenko and a kill from Ferrara brought about several chances to win the match for the Pride, but the Lions rattled off five straight points, starting with two blocks and including a kill from James Garofalo, to tie the set at 14-14.
After Regis's second timeout of the set, Alves earned a kill to bring about the Pride's sixth match point opportunity. A short rally ensued, but Beimel was able to finally put away a kill to give Regis its first victory of the 2019 season.
Regis opened the match by winning six of the first seven points, punctuated by a kill and consecutive service aces by Ferrara. Later in the first set, the Pride scored six unanswered points, led by Andreenko with two kills and two block assists, to extend their lead to 20-8. Regis took advantage of a service error and an attack error by the Lions to clinch the first set.
With the score tied at 6-6 in the second set, Eastern Nazarene scored six straight points, led by a kill and a block assist apiece from Arthur Kossoski and Eddings, to open a 12-6 advantage. Regis pulled within one at 14-13 on a block by Andreenko and Jack Wizboski (Townsend, Mass.), but the Lions closed out the set with a 10-2 scoring run, capped by a block from Eddings and Brandon Jenkins.
The third set was tied at 8-8 when Regis went on a 9-2 scoring run, starting with two kills and a block by Ferrara and capped by consecutive kills from Alves, to open a 17-10 lead. After a kill by Samuel Cueva closed the Lion deficit to 18-14, the Pride finished off the set with a 7-1 scoring run, featuring solo blocks by Andreenko and Ferrara.
Regis looked to close out the match in the fourth set, jumping out to an 11-6 lead, but Eastern Nazarene fought back, scoring five unanswered points, capped by a service ace from Eddings, to tie the set at 11-11. The two teams traded points until the end of the set, when a kill by Kossoski and a Regis attack error gave the Lions the fourth set to force the deciding fifth set.
Kossoski led the Lions with 13 kills, while Cueva finished with nine kills. Setter Brandon Jenkins accumulated 29 assists and nine digs, and libero Sunil Lepcha paced his team defensively with 14 digs.
The Pride led the Lions in kills (50-36), hitting percentage (.144-.061), service aces (7-3), digs (60-53), and team blocks (11.0-8.5). Sebastian Valdes (Diamond Bar, Calif.) started as Regis's setter and dished out 28 assists before getting hurt. Jayson Vega (Ponce, Puerto Rico) came on to replace Valdes in the fourth set and earned 12 of his 15 assists in the final two sets.
Regis (1-1) heads west to face defending national champion Springfield College next Tuesday, Jan. 29, starting at 7 p.m. Eastern Nazarene is off until next Thursday, Jan. 31, when the Lions host Lasell College at 7 p.m.