CHICAGO – Junior outside hitter Aaron Porter (Woodridge, Ill./Downers Grove South) finished with a combined 19 kills, 20 digs and nine service aces to help lead the Saint Xavier University men's volleyball team to a split of its two matches at the SXU Tri-Match Friday evening at the Shannon Center in Chicago. The Cougars (5-13 overall/3-8 MAMVIC) won the first Mid-America Men's Volleyball Intercollegiate Conference (MAMVIC) match against Siena Heights University (Mich.) in three sets 25-20, 29-27 and 25-18. However, SXU then dropped its second match of the night to No. 2 ranked Saint Ambrose University (Iowa) in four sets 11-25, 25-23, 19-25 and 16-25. Saint Ambrose defeated Siena Heights in the second match of the night in three sets by scores of 25-23, 25-16 and 25-18.
Sophomore outside hitter Justin Cousin (Oak Park, Ill./Oak Park-River Forest) also had a nice outing for Saint Xavier Friday combining for 21 kills and three block assists. Freshmen Jim Boyce (Tinley Park, Ill./Andrew) and Dan French (Chicago, Ill./Notre Dame) split up the setting duties with Boyce recording 30 assists on the night and French posting 27. Freshman middle blocker Sean Blackwood (Manhattan, Ill./Lincoln-Way Central) led SXU defensively with eight total blocks (one solo, seven assists), while freshman libero Adam Sieger (New Lenox, Ill./Lincoln-Way Central) was also tough on defense with 20 combined digs.
The Cougars came out ready to avenge their road loss to the Saints earlier in the week and jumped out to an early 4-0 lead paced by a pair of quick aces by Porter. Porter finished the match with seven kills, 10 digs and five aces, while Cousin led the offensive charge with 11 kills. SXU finished the opening match with 39 kills and just 16 errors for an attack percentage of .230. In Friday's late match against Saint Ambrose, the Cougars had difficulty slowing down the Fighting Bees' impressive offensive attack of 55 total kills. Porter posted 12 kills, 10 digs and four aces in the match, while Cousin finished with 10 kills. SXU struggled to get into a rhythm offensively in the first and fourth sets producing only nine combined kills to 13 attack errors in those two frames.
Saint Xavier (5-13 overall/3-8 MAMVIC) takes next week off for Spring Break and returns to action on Monday, March 5, for a non-conference match-up against Hope International University (Calif.). The match is scheduled for a 7 p.m. start at the Shannon Center.