March 31, 2010

Kook Sets IPFW Hitting Record in 3-0 Loss at Lewis

Romeoville, IL - Senior middle blocker Oliver Kook converted kills on 12 of 14 total attacks, posting a new IPFW single-match record .857 overall hitting percentage, as the 'Dons fell to conference foe Lewis, 29-31, 24-30, 29-31.

Kook's record .857 hitting percentage breaks current IPFW assistant coach Ryan Perrotte's single-match record, set in 1999 against the Ohio State Buckeyes. Perrotte hit 17 of 20 and, like Kook, did not make an attack error in the match.

Unfortunately for the IPFW squad, the match began with an IPFW service error and with the small lead in hand, the Flyers did not let up. Lewis, who dropped out of the AVCA national rankings this week for the first time of the 2010 season, jumped out to a 14-9 lead in the opening frame. Maintaining a steady three point lead until deep into the set, cruised to a set point opportunity at 29-26.

After a kill by Kook and Flyer timeout, the Lewis squad posted back-to-back attack errors to knot the set at 29 a piece. After another whistle to calm the Mastodon momentum, Lewis fired a kill and IPFW's last ditch effort found the net, as the attack error closed a nail-biter first set 31-29 in favor of the Flyers.

Despite faltering late, the IPFW offense hit at an efficient .361 mark in the first set.

The two teams continued their neck-and-neck battle into the second stanza, as Lewis didn't take their first two-point lead until the score was to 12-10. With a 16-15 lead, the Flyers rattled off five of the next seven points to take a commanding 21-17 advantage. From there, the Lewis offense was in a groove, as a Chris Biscardi kill closed a second-set Lewis victory, 30-24.

The third frame played out in a much different key. IPFW took an early 8-5 lead, eventually growing the advantage to as many as four 21-17. Slowly chipping away, though, a persistent Lewis attack eventually knotted the third stanza at 24. The Flyers captured their first lead of the set on a Mastodon attack error to take a 26-25 lead.

Back-to-back Lewis attack errors swung the favor back to the 'Dons, giving them a late 28-26 before the Flyers took three of the next four points, again knotting the see-saw battle at 29-29. Lewis' Ian Karbiener fired a laser kill to bring the set to match point and IPFW's final attack fell short, as Lewis closed the third set victory, 31-29.

IPFW's Darryl Shank and Elon Fyfield led the squad with 15 kills a piece, with Shank also tallying a team-high seven digs. Dan Mader posted 51 assists as the 'Dons posted a respectable .313 hitting percentage overall in the match.

The loss drops IPFW to 9-13 overall on the year and 2-7 in MIVA play. Lewis moves to 16-7 overall and improves their conference mark to 5-3.

IPFW will return to action Friday, as they host the ninth-ranked Penn State Nittany Lions. First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m. from the Hilliard Gates Sports Center in Fort Wayne.

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