NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - The Cal Lutheran men's volleyball team traveled down the road to take on the No. 15 ranked NCAA Division I Cal State Northridge Matadors on Thursday night and put up a valiant effort before falling 3-0 (25-22, 25-17, 25-19).
Despite being tied 18-18 late in the opening frame, the Kingsmen dropped a close first set after the Matadors pulled away late. CSUN hit .333 with 13 kills on 24 attacks in the set compared to just eight kills on 24 attacks for CLU. In the second set, the Matadors hit an incredibly efficient .520 and held on to a slim lead throughout the set. In the third set, the Kingsmen were within reach once again, trailing 19-17 down the stretch, however CSUN went on a 6-2 run to close out the game for the sweep. CLU hit .231 in the final set with nine kills as a team.
Offensive Highlights: Freshman Patrick Rowe led the way offensively once again with a team-high six kills while Mason Mercer and Michael Campbell added four apiece. Kristian Gallardo finished with three kills and one of three service aces for CLU. Nick Shoemate led the way with 19 assists in the match.
Defensive Highlights: The Kingsmen registered six total blocks in the game with three of them courtesy of Shoemate while Campbell added two and Rowe pitched in one. Jamal Balkhi led the team with six digs and the pair of Mercer and Shoemate added three apiece.
The Opponent: The Matadors were led by Dimitar Kalchev, who was an unstoppable force all night, tallying 21 kills on 28 attacks for a .678 hitting percentage. Schylar Lillethorup logged 11 kills for CSUN and Parker Maki also reached double figure kills with 10. Sam Porter led the way with 44 assists and Lillethorup had a game-high eight digs.
Cal Lutheran (0-4) turns right around and takes on NCAA Division II program Concordia-Irvine (7-6) in road action tomorrow, Jan. 27 at 7:00 p.m.
Box Score: CSUN 3, CLU 0
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