MAHWAH, NJ – Sage men's volleyball came up with a key Skyline sweep in their last regular season matches Saturday evening. The Gators took a redemption win from Ramapo in a dramatic 3-2 comeback in the first match followed by a 3-1 win over Purchase College.
Sage (17-14, 6-3 Skyline) was led against Ramapo by Bailey Cecchi (Agawam, MA/Agawam) and Ryan Guyton (Lockport, NY/Lockport) with a combined 33.5 points on 30 kills, three blocks and one ace. Freshman Shane Wenz (Valatie, NY/Ichabod Crane) was also in double-digit scoring with 13 points on 12 kills and one block. Setter Austin Laverty (Schenectady, NY/Mohonasen) led the match with 45 assists. On the defensive end, Casey Fitzpatrick (Haverhill, MA/Haverhill) came up with 13 digs while Guyton and Tyler Schnaible (Ballston Lake, NY/Shenendehowa) each had two blocks. Guyton was only one dig away from his first double-double of the season.
Ramapo's (18-11, 7-2 Skyline) Justin Feigeles led the Roadrunners with a double-double on 17 assists and 15 kills. The junior was two digs away from a triple-double coming up with a team-high eight. Nick Amos and Paul Close were also in double digit scoring with 16 and 14 points respectively. Adding to Feigeles' assts was Lucas Inglis with 22. Terrence Cando led Ramapo with nine digs.
The prior meeting between Ramapo and Sage was in the Skyline Championship semifinals. The Roadrunners took the match 3-0 to advance to the conference final.
After dropping the first sets 25-15 and 25-23, Sage went up 18-11 in the third set. The Roadrunners cut down the lead to 19-14, until Sage went on a 6-4 run led by Cecchi, Laverty and Guyton to take the set 25-18.
In set four, Sage took their biggest lead of the match 18-6 with points from Schnaible, Wenz, Guyton and Zackery Karl (West Monroe, NY/Central Square). Ramapo responded with a three point run, but the Gators went on a 7-2 run to take the set 25-11.
Ramapo jumped out to a 6-3 lead in the fifth set, but Sage scored three straight points to tie the set 6-6. The Roadrunners reclaimed a three-point lead on a Feigeles kill before Sage went on a 4-1 run to tie the match 11-11. Ramapo went back up 14-11 until Sage scored three points to tie the set 14-14. A Laverty ace forced a match points, but another kill from Feigeles tied the set 15-15. Sage then scored two unanswered points to take the set 17-15 and the match 3-2.
In the second match with Purchase (14-7, 4-4 Skyline), Cecchi scored his second double-double of year with 13 kills and 11 digs. Guyton and Wenz each scored 11 points on 15 kills, four blocks and three aces. Laverty came up with 36 assists while Fitzpatrick gathered 13 digs.
On the other side of the net, Kevin Carges led the Panthers with 12 points on 10 kills and two aces. Riley Damerell had a team-high 19 assists. On defense, Andrew Schwab and Carges combined for 13 digs while Ethan Huang came up with three blocks.
After the Gators took the first set 25-8, the second set started 11-10 in favor of Sage, the boys in green scored nine unanswered points to go up 18-11. Purchase cut the lead down to 20-14, but it wasn't enough as Sage took the set 25-15.
In the third set, Purchase held on for a 25-23 win to force a fourth set. The Gators took a 19-8 in the final set. A block from Luke Kubisch brought the lead down to ten, but Sage kept the pressure up and took the final set 25-15.
After his effort today, Cecchi is 11 points away from becoming the fourth player in Sage history to hit the 1,000 career point milestone.
Fitzpatrick made his way further up the career digs list into third, passing Spencer Hilland (2011-13) with 605. Guyton also moved up in career digs to seventh by passing Matt Bynon (2011) with 384. In single-season records, Guyton moved into eighth, passing Hilland's 2013 mark with 315. Guyton also tied Hilland's sixth place 2012 35 aces and the junior moved into eighth with 365.5. Meanwhile, Wenz is tied in third in block solos with 19 and in eighth in total blocks with 62.
With one day left in the regular season, Sage is currently sits in fourth. At the top of the table is Kean with a perfect 9-0 while Ramapo and Mount Saint Vincent are 7-2. In the last two playoff spots are St. Joseph's – Long Island at 4-3 and Purchase 4-5. The final seeding will be determined after the remaining matches are played tomorrow.