NEWTON, Mass. – Sophomores Scott Sterenberg (Oceanside, N.Y.) and Janci Soto (Lawrence, Mass.) had double-figure kills Saturday afternoon as Lasell College upset Wentworth Institute of Technology in a five-set men's volleyball match, 3-2, in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) regular-season finale at the Lasell Athletic Center.
Wentworth won the first and third sets, 25-20 and 28-26, while Lasell won the second and fourth sets, 25-21 and 26-24, before pulling out the victory with a 15-10 verdict in the decisive fifth set.
Lasell winds up the regular season at 9-20 overall and 6-8 in GNAC matches, while Wentworth finishes up at 21-10 overall and 11-3 in conference play. Wentworth will host a GNAC first-round match on Tuesday, April 10, while Lasell will be on the road for the playoffs beginning Tuesday. The full play-off schedule will be announced at the completion of all of this weekend's GNAC matches.
Sterenberg made 16 kills with a .438 attack percentage (16-2-32) for the Lasers while Soto added 11 winners, a .364 percentage (11-3-22) and four blocks. Junior setter Andy Henriquez (Lawrence, Mass.) produced eight kills and 47 assists, and freshman Conor Leary-Watson (Bethany, Conn.) chipped in with eight kills and three blocks. Junior libero Jordan Aprea (Newington, Conn.) contributed a career-high 23 digs, his fourth 20-plus dig performance this season.
Freshman Kevin Devine (Charlotte, Vt.) was Wentworth's top hitter with 12 kills and a .229 attack percentage. Senior Ollie Oshman (Pennington, N.J.), sophomore Josh Jackson (Massillon, Ohio), and freshman Sean Spencer (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.) all added eight winners for the Leopards, with Oshman hitting at an .889 clip (8-0-9). Spencer topped the team with five blocks; sophomore Augusto Rodriguez-Guerrios (Guaynabo, P.R.) led the Leopards with 33 assists; and senior Kevin McPeek (Bethlehem, Pa.) posted a team-best 12 digs.
Wentworth went on an 8-2 run midway through the first set to open up a 15-8 lead. Lasell got as close as four points late in the set before the visitors finished off the set, 25-21. The Lasers rallied in the middle of the second set to turn a 12-8 deficit into a 20-16 lead before closing out a 25-21 victory to even the match at one set apiece.
The third set was a back-and-forth affair with several tie scores late in the set. Lasell fought off four set-points before a pair of kills by Devine clinched the set for Wentworth, 28-26. There were also several tie scores in the fourth set, and the visitors had a chance to finish off the match with a 24-23 lead, but Lasell scored three straight points on one kill from freshman Greg Monteiro (New Bedford, Mass.) and two kills by Henriquez to pull out a 26-24 victory to force a fifth set.
Lasell ran off eight unanswered points in the final set on the serving of freshman Aaron Waitekus (Norwood, Mass.) to pull ahead, 11-5. Sterenberg had three kills for the Lasers in the rally. That was too much for Wentworth to overcome and the home team went on to a 15-10 triumph.
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