The McKendree University men's volleyball team pulled out a 3-1 road win in a non-conference match with King University Thursday night. The Bearcats won by scores of 25-16, 25-21, 23-25, and 25-21.
The win improves McKendree to 8-8 overall on the season. The Bearcats are back in action Friday at 7 p.m. EST versus Barton College.
McKendree had four players reach double figures in kills paced by sophomore outside hitter Jared Wilcox (Warrenville, IL/Wheaton-Warrenville South) who put down a match high 18 finishing just one dig shy of a double-double with nine. Fellow sophomore outside hitter Nolan Rueter (Burlington, WI/Burlington) was second in kills with 13 adding six digs and two blocks. Sophomore middle blockerBrendan Schmidt (O'Fallon, MO/Fort Zumwalt West) tabbed 12 kills while adding a match high eight blocks.
Sophomore setter Pasquale Fiduccia (Hanover Park, IL/Glenbard North) notched a double-double after handing out a match high 53 assists to go with 11 digs and six blocks. Junior outside hitter Andrew Schnittker (Arlington Heights, IL/Buffalo Grove) contributed a double-double of his own pairing 11 kills with 10 digs. Freshman libero Zach Thompson (Defiance, MO/Francis Howell) tallied a match high 14 digs as the Bearcats held King to just a .103 team attack percentage.
McKendree used a five point run that included a kill and two blocks from Schmidt to open an early 13-7 lead over the Tornados. King was able to cut into the lead as they battled back at 19-16, but the Bearcats rattled off the final six points of the set capped off with a kill from Schnittker and an ace from Rueter to give McKendree a 1-0 lead.
The Tornados rebounded in the early stages of set two as they opened up with a 10-5 advantage. The Bearcats clawed back in the middle stages of the set with a pair of kills from Schmidt as well as kills from Rueter, Wilcox, and junior middle blocker Michael Polizzi (St. Louis, MO/DeSmet Jesuit). King fended off McKendree as best they could as they held a one point lead at 20-19 before a 6-1 run from the Bearcats tilted the second set in favor of McKendree down the stretch.
After dropping the third set the Bearcats used a three point spree to start the fourth set that included back to back kills from Schmidt and Rueter. King momentarily tied the set at 7-7, but McKendree used another three point run to regain the lead. Another 3-0 run from the Bearcats opened up a commanding 16-11 lead for McKendree and the Tornados could not seem to find an answer as they failed to come closer than three points down the stretch as the Bearcats closed the match with a four point win.