Although they had different looks, EMU earned the same outcome in both contests of Saturday's tri-match - a pair of sweeps. The Royals improve to 14-5 with the wins, including 6-2 in the Continental Volleyball Conference.
Eastern Mennonite maintains their perch as one of the top teams in the powerful CVC West as they prepare for a big showdown at Southern Virginia on Wednesday. The Royals swept SVU in Harrisonburg on Feb. 7, but the Knights, in their second season as a program, are 12-0 all-time at home.
Last weekend in Buena Vista, Southern Virginia (10-4/4-2 CVC) took wins from three nationally ranked opponents, Marymount, Juniata and UC Santa Cruz, and they entered the national poll at No. 8 this week. Game time on Wednesday night is set for 7:00pm.
EMU 3, Ramapo 0
No. 15 Eastern Mennonite simply had too much power for the Roadrunners, evident by a 13-3 run to close a 25-16 win in the first set. A 12-3 run broke open the second, which EMU won 25-17.
The Royals had a trio of 5-0 runs in the third, finishing things off with another 25-17 score.
As a team, the men out-hit Ramapo, .329 to -.011. William Ragland (North Chesterfield, Va./Thomas Dale) led the charge with 12 kills and no errors on 20 swings, while adding four service aces and seven digs.
R.J. Ocampo (Virginia Beach, Va./First Colonial) racked up six blocks, while Travis Abele (Mechanicsville, Va./Lee-Davis) added four. Micah Buller (Richmond, Va./Douglas Freeman) led all players with 10 digs.
Garrett Fitzsimmons led Ramapo with eight kills.
EMU 3, Stevenson 0
The final match of the day was an intriguing clash against Stevenson, a former CVC foe. Ragland capped an 8-1 streak to end a 25-17 first set before things got interesting.
EMU jumped ahead 6-1 in the second but the Mustangs bolted right back with a 7-1 streak to take the lead. They kept pushing to a 19-13 margin, totaling an 18-7 run. The Royals answered with an 8-1 jab to flip back in front, 21-20. Stevenson scored the next three and had three chances at set point before the men got the advantage. The teams traded points until EMU finally cashed in on their sixth attempt at set point, getting a block from Lutz and Abele to win, 32-30.
The third set was void of big runs, but not lacking in drama. SU had a 22-21 lead before the Royals got in front. With the score tied at 25-25, Ragland pounded a kill and Ocampo combined with Callahan for the double stuff, wrapping up a 27-25 clincher.
Ragland racked up 15 kills in the three-setter, adding eight digs. Lutz had nine kills and four blocks. Setter Christian Taylor (Richmond, Va./Deep Run) lofted 36 assists, averaging 12.0 per set.
Ocampo was huge at the net, getting six more blocks including two solos. Callahan made nine digs.
Landon Shorts led Stevenson with 12 kills and nine digs.