MUNCIE, Ind. – Sophomore outside attacker Marcin Niemczewski’s career night led the Ball State men’s volleyball team to a 3-0 sweep (25-20, 25-23, 25-19) of the Sacred Heart Pioneers Saturday evening at Worthen Arena.
The Cardinals experimented with a different line-up inserting outside attacker Shane Witmer at libero and giving senior Larry Wrather, junior Matt Sutherland and sophomore Marcin Niemczewski the start. Ball State benefitted from 17 service errors committed by Sacred Heart to go with 15 attack errors.
Niemczewski ended with a career-high across his stat line with 15 kills of 32 attempts to go with three service aces and three digs. In addition, the sophomore had an assist and two assisted blocks. Wrather had seven kills for a .417 attack percentage (7-2-12). Senior middle attacker Matt Leske added five kills to go with two assisted blocks while Sutherland added four kills on the night.
Senior setter Graham McIlvaine had 32 assists and six digs to go with a solo block, two assisted blocks and two kills. Classmate Kevin Owens added three kills, a solo block and two assisted blocks. In his first match in the libero position, Witmer received 23 balls with one reception error and had four digs.
The Cardinals held the advantage in kills (36-31), attack percentage (.274 – .211), aces (7-3), digs (24-17) and blocks (8.5 – 7).
Ball State now improves to 1-1 on the season while Sacred Heart falls to 0-2.
The Cardinals head on the road for their first road trip of the season. Ball State will take on Saint Francis on Friday, Jan. 17 at 7 p.m., before traveling to Penn State for a 4 p.m. match on Saturday, Jan. 18. Check ballstatesports.com for more news and information on Ball State men’s volleyball.