The Loyola men’s volleyball team (8-0, 4-0) added another game to its winning streak with its 3-1 defeat of Lindenwood University Feb. 13. With this victory, the Ramblers completed their sweep of the two-game series after winning Feb. 12 in a 3-0 sweep.
Loyola managed to put the first two points of the game on the board, but Lindenwood fired back quickly. This set up the back-and-forth tempo that would continue throughout the game.
Loyola junior opposite Luke Denton added two back-to-back kills early on, with the last two kills of the first set coming from first-year middle-blocker Jimmy Meinhart. The Ramblers took the first set 25-19 with 16 kills, two blocks and a single ace.
In the second set, Denton, redshirt sophomore outside hitter Cole Schlothauer and senior setter Garrett Zolg each put up two kills, briefly pushing Loyola to a one-point lead — but it didn’t last.
Sophomore outside hitter Colton Brooks got the Ramblers’ last kill of the second set — pushing the Ramblers to 18-19 — before Loyola began trailing Lindenwood. Despite a rash of service errors from the Lions, they took the second set 18-25.
A service ace by Brooks got Loyola its first point of the third set, after trailing the Lions by three points. Denton hit his ninth kill for the team as the third set carried on, with one point going to Loyola after a Lindenwood attack ended up hitting the roof of Alfie Norville Practice Center.
Two kills from Schlothauer and redshirt sophomore outside hitter Andrew Lyons helped Loyola push back against Lindenwood’s attacks.
The Ramblers took the third set after a final kill by Denton, bringing the final score to 25-18.
Both teams got off to a rocky start to begin the fourth set — service errors gave each team a point within the first few minutes. Though both Zolg and Lindenwood redshirt junior outside hitter Diego Negron got yellow cards, the momentum didn’t change as kills by Schlothauer and Denton pushed Loyola closer to winning. A final kill by Meinhart brought the Ramblers to victory over Lindenwood with a final score of 25-20.
Loyola head coach Mark Hulse said he and the team expected Lindenwood to push back harder after losing the game before. While the Ramblers expanded their now 8-0 run, Hulse said the team was “tested” by Lindenwood.
However, Hulse said he thought his team played better in the last match than this game.
“We served the ball a whole lot better than we did last night,” Hulse said. “[But] I don’t think we did much else much better.”
The Ramblers are set to play their next series at The Ohio State University Feb. 20-21. The first match is scheduled for 3 p.m. Feb. 20.