Loyola ‘rambles’ by Leos, uneven play decides game

Alone in his attempt to block a Rambler’s bump, junior middle blocker Jason Flick strives to save the Leopards from impending doom. Although unsuccessful in this try, he had one solo and four assisted blocks in Monday’s match against Loyola University. It took four games for the Leopards to fall, 15-7, 6-15, 15-12 and 15-5. / photo by Rosie Sinapi

by Andrea Gardner
Editorial Assistant

When asked about the University of La Verne men’s volleyball team’s performance against Loyola University of Chicago, head coach Don Flora summarized it as “sort of hot and cold.”

The match, played at home on March 4, was a loss for the Leopards, who were defeated by the Ramblers in four games, 15-7, 6-15, 15-12 and 15-5.

The Leopards lost the first contest, but substituted freshman setter/outside hitter Chris Peterson in the second game and came back to win, 15-6. Peterson also felt the team was inconsistent, saying, “We play good sporadically.”

The Leopards got close to defeating the Ramblers in the third game, but lost by three points. Despite 32 kills by junior Rob Sneider and 18 by Peterson, the Ramblers were able to seal the win by 10 points in the fourth and final game of the match.

“Rob Sneider had an incredible game,” said Flora, adding, “Peterson passed the ball well.”

Though Flora initially believed the Leopards would beat Loyola, after the match, he felt that the Ramblers were better hitters overall.

“We need to learn to step up at the right time,“ said Flora.

He and Peterson were also dissatisfied with the referees. Peterson received a yellow card before the final point of the match.

“The refs lost control of the match a little bit,” said Flora.

They also came eye-to-eye with an old teammate, Derek Boyle, who transferred to Loyola University last year.

The Leopards are struggling with the loss of two starters for the team, sophomore team captain Joel Harworth and freshman middle blocker/outside hitter Chris Sheets, due to injuries.

Sheets, whose right thumb is injured, will be back on the court tonight, when the Leopards play Vassar University at 7 p.m. in the Supertents. Harworth will most likely be out for the rest of the season due to a partially torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee, which may require surgery.

The Leopards play Lewis University tomorrow at 7 p.m., also at home.

“We really want to win at home,” Peterson said.

Andrea Gardner
Rosie Sinapi

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