Purchase “played a lot harder” than Beavers in home opener.
The Purchase Panthers defeated the City College Beavers in a thrilling home opener that was decided in the final set of the best of five series. City College seemed poised to win there eagerly anticipated home opener after opening with two road games. The momentum seemed to be with the Beavers as they quickly jumped ahead with two straight set wins. However, the Panthers proved they simply wanted it more, storming back in dramatic fashion to win three straight sets and ultimately the match 3-2 (25-20, 25-21, 21-25, 30-32, 11-15).
“I have to congratulate Purchase College because they did a great job against us”, said Coach Todorovic when asked to comment on the heart-breaking loss. “It’s a bad habit, like, what we have. It’s normal in volleyball to do such a thing. You think you are winning easily and then you are relaxed.”
“We were very excited for the first two games,” City senior Anthony Reyes added. “I don’t know what happened afterwards. I felt really confident that we would be able to pull through… but they were just playing a lot harder than we were”.
Following the first serve of the game, the Beavers appeared to be flat. After quickly yielding a four-point lead, new head coach Andrijana Todorovic decided to call the team’s first time out.
Whatever she said to the team apparently worked. The Beavers seemingly appeared to have awoken, responding with a 4-2 run that brought our team within one point of tying. The small crowd of City fans quickly learned that looks are deceiving. The Panthers suppressed the small rally, taking control of the first set until the Beavers decided that enough was enough.
The Beavers finally began to show some fight against the Panthers. With a set from Reyes and a kill by David Cham, the City College fans roared to their feet as City finally managed to rally and tie the game at 16. Matthew McCarthy then got involved with a simply splendid service ace that gave CCNY the lead for the very first time. The Beavers, after quickly falling behind four points in the set, rallied back with an impressive 22-18 run to give the Beavers the win in the first set.
The Beavers continue to march on in the second set, easily winning and taking a commanding 2-0 lead in the match. They had control for almost the entire game. With the score 8-6, City went on a surge with a six-point run. The City College faithful enjoyed a dazzling display of volleyball prowess with their home team scoring nine of their next 17 points by way of kills. Reyes scored five of City’s nine kills during this impressive run. Eventually, Reyes would lead the team in this category with an impressive total of 28 kills, adding 75 Total Attempts and 23 Digs. Just when City College seemed poised to win its home opener, the Beavers got complacent with their lead.
Too relaxed to administer the final blow and sweep the Panthers with a third straight win, the bottom fell out from below the Beavers. The Panthers in turn showed new life. Aggressively and determined not to be swept, the Purchase Panthers stormed back. Winning three straight sets in dramatic fashion, the Panthers upset the host team in their home opener of the Spring 2015 semester. In defense of the Beavers, it was no easy accomplishment. In the fourth set, a 24-24 tie forced the game to be decided by a two-point margin. The Beavers were one point away five times in the set and the crowd was going nuts. The tension was thick enough to cut in the Robert E. Marshak gymnasium but the Panthers ultimately prevailed.
Todorovic was quick to admit that the CCNY Beavers were without their star setter, sophomore Oleksandr Boychuk. Boychuk missed the home opener in what was described as “personal reasons”. Coach Todorovic feels that the outcome of the game would have been much different if Boychuk were in the line-up. Reyes agreed with Coach Todorovic’s assessment but admitted his own reason for the loss as well. “We were missing a player because of a family emergency. We were supposed to take it relatively quick, but I think we like, fell apart.”
CCNY’s Men’s Volleyball team drops to 1-2 after the loss. Their next scheduled game is against The College of Staten Island in Saturday’s CUNYAC Multi-Match at John Jay at 3 p.m. City defeated CSI 3-0 during the first match of the season. The Beavers will then take on John Jay in the second part of the Multi-Match doubleheader at 5 pm.