Men’s Volleyball Drops Hard-Fought Five-Setter to St. Joe’s-LI as Ferrari Surpasses 1,000-Career Assists

JERSEY CITY, NJ — The New Jersey City University men’s volleyball team hosted Skyline Conference rival St. Joseph’s College-Long Island at the John J. Moore Athletics and Fitness Center (JMAC) on Monday evening, March 14. The Gothic Knights won the first two sets against the Golden Eagles, however St. Joe’s took the final three on the night and defeated NJCU 3-2 (21-25, 24-26, 25-20, 26-24, 15-10).

The Green and Gold (13-7, 3-3 Skyline) controlled the momentum against the Golden Eagles (14-3, 4-0 Skyline) for the first two sets and looked to be well on their way to a four-set victory over the visitors as they held a three-point 24-21 lead toward the end of the fourth set. However, St. Joe’s won the final five points of that set to force a fifth one.

Jersey City held a strong advantage in the first set and led by as many as five points on several occasions before closing it out with a block from juniors Brandon DaSilva (Kearny, NJ/Kearny) and James Bajor (Bayonne, NJ/Bayonne)† DaSilva had five kills on seven swings to go with three total blocks in the first set to help the Gothic Knights to a 1-0 match lead. Then, leading by four points and again holding momentum toward the end of the second set at 22-18, NJCU lost starting outside hitter junior Hanel Collado (North Bergen, NJ/North Bergen) to injury. The sudden shift nearly allowed the Golden Eagles back into the match as they won six of the next eight points to tie it up at 24-24. Thankfully senior Jonathan Andrews (North Bergen, NJ/North Bergen) smashed down back-to-back kills to seal the set and the 2-0 lead.
 

Ferrari (17) surpassed the 1,000-career assists mark tonight.

Set number three saw the Gothic Knights fall down by as many as five points, but they came back to make it a 21-19 game and force a St. Joe’s timeout. The comeback seemed to be on and NJCU briefly contemplates the thought of a straight-set victory. However, the Golden Eagles notched three kills and an ace over the final five points to take the set 25-20. Then, as mentioned, the squads went point-for-point in the fourth set until Jersey City took a three-point, 24-21 advantage, followed by a 5-0 run to tie up the match at 2-2 from St. Joe’s.

The final set of the night saw, once again, each team trade points back and forth through the halfway mark at which point NJCU trailed 7-6. However, St. Joe’s won four straight points to take an 11-6 lead before the teams split the final eight points of the match and the visitors took game number five 15-10 and completed the five-set comeback.

Highlights:
– Senior Setter Leo Ferrari (Kearny, NJ/Kearny) led NJCU with 44 assists and completed a career milestone by surpassing the 1,000-career assist plateau — he now has 1,030 for his career. He added 11 digs, a season-high four total blocks, three kills and an ace and now has two double-doubles this season and five for his career.
– Senior Libero Daniel Esteva (Union, NJ/Union) finished with a match-best 17 digs and a pair of assists.
Andrews led NJCU with 20 kills to go with 10 digs, two aces and three total blocks. He now has two double-doubles this season and five for his career.
– DaSilva notched 13 kills on 24 swings with three errors (.333 hitting percentage) and added a team-best five total blocks.
– Bajor notched 12 kills, 13 digs and an ace for the double-double — the second of the season, and of his career.

Up Next:
Looking to get back to their winning ways after their three-match winning streak came to a halt tonight, the Gothic Knights will host non-conference foe Arcadia University at the JMAC on Thursday evening, March 17, at 5:30 pm

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