LORETTO, Pa. – The Saint Francis men's volleyball team sent off the senior class with a 3-1 defeat over the University of Charleston on Saturday afternoon at DeGol Arena. The Flash won 25-21, 16-25, 25-13, and 26-24.
Saint Francis finished the regular season with a 15-14 overall record and a 10-4 conference record, while Charleston ends the season with a 12-17 record and was 0-14 in the EIVA.
Jeff Hogan (Northern Cambria, Pa./Northern Cambria) led the Flash with 10 kills while Brandon Buck (Baden, Pa./Ambridge) contributed with nine. Stephen Braswell (Manchester, Pa./Northeastern) finished with three service aces and three blocks. Nick Bennett (Doylestown, Pa./Central Bucks East) recorded five blocks, while Daniel Ford (Newtown, Pa./Council Rock North) finished with 26 assists and Gabe Woffindin (Allentown, Pa./William Allen) ended the match with 10 digs.
Saint Francis jumped out to a commanding 6-2 lead after a pair of Braswell service aces. Charleston responded with a 4-0 run to tie the set at 7-7. A kill by Adam Kniffen (Latrobe, Pa./Greater Latrobe), Braswell and Bennett pulled the Flash ahead, 13-9. Out of a Charleston timeout, the Golden Eagles rattled off three unanswered points to cut the deficit to one, 13-12. Leading 20-14, it seemed the Flash put the set out of reach, but the Eagles trimmed the Flash lead to 21-18 after scoring four of the next five points. Two Charleston service errors gave the Flash the 25-21 win.
Charleston started the second set with an 8-3 advantage. The Golden Eagles never looked back and cruised to a 25-16 win.
The Red Flash took control of the third set by leading 8-5. With Saint Francis leading 10-8, SFU scored 11 of the next 13 to put the set to rest, 25-13.
The Golden Eagles got the quick start in the fourth set, leading 5-2. Kills from Brandon Buck (Baden, Pa./Ambridge) and Braswell tied the set at 8-8. Two SFU errors and a Donovan Wilmott kill put the Golden Eagles up 13-10. U of C continued to maintain its lead, but the Flash rallied to tie the set at 18-18. Saint Francis broke a 22-22 tie to have match point at 24-22, but Charleston held off match point to knot the score at 24-24. A kill from Buck and a service ace gave the Flash the set and match 26-24.
Saint Francis travels to Penn State University to face Sacred Heart in the first round of the EIVA playoffs next Thursday at 5 p.m.