Men’s Volleyball Sweeps Sage for First Win

Junior Ryan Kelly had 16 assists, 3 kills and 3 blocks as the Keuka College men's volleyball team defeated the Sage Colleges in three sets Friday on day one of the inaugural Keuka College Invitational (photo courtesy of Taylor Smith, Keuka College Sports Information Department).
Junior Ryan Kelly had 16 assists, 3 kills and 3 blocks as the Keuka College men's volleyball team defeated the Sage Colleges in three sets Friday on day one of the inaugural Keuka College Invitational (photo courtesy of Taylor Smith, Keuka College Sports Information Department).

Sophomore Connor Hinman (Lethbridge, Alberta/Catholic Central) recorded 15 kills with 6 digs and 3 blocks and classmate Tom Campbell (Penfield, NY/Penfield) added seven kills as the Keuka College men's volleyball team swept the Sage Colleges for its first win of the year.

Hinman hit .346 after recording six errors in 26 attempts while Campbell hit .250 after recording three errors in 16 attempts as Keuka swept Sage 26-24, 25-23 and 25-18 on day one of the inaugural Keuka College Invitational.

"This was a good win for us. Every moment of the match, we played our game," said Hinman, an outside hitter who earned first-team All-NEAC and was named the NEAC Tournament MVP in leading the Storm to the NEAC championship in 2013.

"Whenever they caught back up to us, we figured out what we needed to do and never let them take the lead. Our passing was great today. The setters gave me a chance to have a one-on-one with a blocker, which is much easier to hit against."

Senior Devin Lesch (San Diego, CA/El Cajon Valley) recorded six kills with one error in 17 attempts (.294 hitting percentage) for the Storm (1-5).

Freshman Derek Hosken (Hamburg, NY/Frontier) added four blocks with three kills, while junior Ryan Kelly (Clifton Springs, NY/Midlakes) had 16 assists, 3 kills and 3 blocks and Lesch added three blocks to lead the Storm.

Sophomore Josh Makin (Lethbridge, Alberta/Catholic Central) added a team-high nine digs while classmate Christopher Mooring (Chesapeake, VA/Hickory) added seven digs for the Green and Gold, who knocked off a Sage squad that captured the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III North championship last year after going 30-7.

"We came in prepared to play a great team and we had a decent match," said Campbell, who along with Kelly and Makin make up the Storm's captains.

"It feels good to get this win at home in front of our fans. We had full stands on both bleachers and it was great to finally play in front of our home fans and get a good win."

Keuka trailed 20-19 in the opening set, but Hinman hit a big kill to knot the score. Sage led 23-22 before Campbell had a kill to even the score, and Hinman added a kill to bring up set point.

Sage fought off the first set point, but with the score even at 24, Hinman posted back-to-back kills as Keuka took the first set, 26-24.

In the second set, Campbell had a big kill to give the Storm a 12-10 lead. Lesch and Kelly combined on a block for a 14-11 lead and Campbell added a kill for a 15-12 lead.

Sage (0-2) responded and trailed 19-18 before Hosken hit a big kill for a 20-18 lead. The Storm held off the Gators to take a 2-0 lead.

The Storm trailed 6-3 in the early going of the third set before going on a 12-0 run. Hinman recorded five kills during the run as the Storm took a 15-6 lead.

Sage fought back and pulled within 22-18, but Kelly had a big kill to put Keuka up 23-18 and the Storm held on for their first win.

"We started playing as a team today. Our system fell into place the way we've been waiting for it to and we just played as a full team the whole time tonight," Campbell said. "Our passing set up our offense so we could run it effectively. We had some great defense, they had a hard time finding out how to get the ball down on our side and we were scrappy all game."

Keuka takes on Penn State-Altoona at 11 a.m. and Wells College at 1 p.m. Saturday afternoon on day two of the Invite.