WESTON, Mass. – The Regis College men's volleyball teams winning streak was snapped at five games as the Johnson and Wales University Wildcats beat the hosts 3-1 (19-25, 25-23, 25-22, 25-21) Tuesday evening on Higgins Court. With the win, JWU evens their overall mark at 11-11 while the Pride slip to 8-10 on the campaign.
The Wildcats had a better net presence than the Pride as the visitors recorded 18 total blocks to Regis' 13. Both squads hit decently on the night as JWU edged the Crimson and Gold .180 to .126 in hitting percentage.
Brendan Baker (Providence, R.I.) led the Wildcats with a team-best 12 kills on 30 attempts for a .267 hitting percentage. The junior also paced his team with five total blocks and added six digs on the defensive end. Freshman setter Cameron Ponce (San Jose, Calif.) had a strong game with six kills, a team-high 34 assists, six digs, three blocks and a service ace.
Leading the Pride was reining NECC Rookie of the Week Drew Beimel (Redondo Beach, Calif.) as he set a new career-high with 14 kills. The freshman right side hitter accumulated a .333 hitting percentage, was active on the defensive end with eight digs and handed out one assist. Sophomore outside hitter Jeff Ramos (Pawtucket, R.I.) was the most efficient player for the Crimson and Gold as he recorded nine kills on 15 attempts for a .467 hitting percentage. Ramos added nine digs and led the squad with two service aces. Junior setter Zach Sindoni (Haverhill, Mass.) dished out a match-high 37 helpers along with a team-best 11 digs.
In the first set, JWU built up a 7-3 lead before Regis added five straight points off a service error by Cameron Ponce, a kill from Beimel, Sean Bisnett (Oxnard, Calif.), Brett Krahl (Santa Clarita, Calif.) and a dual block by Sindoni and Krahl gave the Pride an 8-7 lead. The Wildcats knotted up the score on the next serve after a kill from Baker assisted by Ponce.
Both squads exchanged points until the final minutes of the set where Regis pulled away and won the winning point on an attack error by Baker.
In the second set, JWU rallied to take a 17-10 lead after earning four points on attack and service errors for the Pride. Regis responded with two straight points with a Beimel kill and a block by Krahl and Bisnett before a bad set by Sindoni pushed the Wildcat lead to 18-12. The Pride used five unanswered points to pull within one point with huge kills by Bisnett and Marcos Aguirre (Norwalk, Calif.) to make it an 18-17 JWU lead. The Wildcats kept their foot on the gas and used a blocking error by Krahl to clinch the set.
Regis built a 6-3 lead in the third set and held the advantage for most of the set before JWU tied up the contest with a Baker kill from Cameron Ponce. The Wildcats used an 8-3 mini scoring run to take a 19-14 lead with a kill from Rakeem Malone (St. Thomas, USVI). The Pride wouldn't back down as they staged a comeback with a 7-1 run after an impressive kill by Ramos to take a 21-20 lead. A Malone block and a Jackson Steigerwald (Penfield, N.Y.) ace gave the Wildcats the win in the crucial third set.
The Wildcats remained hot in the fourth set as they jumped up to an 8-3 lead following a service ace from Alex Seda (San Juan, PR) forcing Regis to take a timeout. Later on in the set the Pride cut their deficit to one point, 17-16 after a kill from Ramos set up by Sindoni. Regis remained close, but JWU pulled away as Malone's attack attempt landed on the floor in the middle of Pride defenders ending the match.
Regis returns to the court on Thursday for a conference match with Elms at 7:00 p.m.