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Emmanuel Stages Comeback on Lasell, JWU Sweeps Emerson in GNAC Men's Volleyball First Round


#3 JWU 3, #6 EMERSON 0
PROVIDENCE, R.I. –  Prior to Tuesday's contest, the Johnson & Wales University and Emerson College men's volleyball teams met on the court just 72 hours ago. The results of both matches were the same, as the Wildcats defeated the Lions, 3-0 (25-15 25-18, 25-16), during the first round of the GNAC Tournament. The Wildcats will now be on the road for the semifinals as they travel to second-seeded Wentworth for a 7:00 p.m. contest on Thursday.

Emerson: 12-12
Johnson & Wales: 18-14

Statistical Leaders:
Dondre Crump (JWU): 12 kills
Kanila Chang (JWU): 8 kills, 4 digs
Nick Bitetto (JWU): 6 kills, 7 digs.

Of Note:
Johnson & Wales had the offense clicking in the first set with a .471 hitting percentage. Three early EC errors, including a Matt LaVasseur ace, put the Lions in a hole they could not recover from. JWU took control of the second set with an 11-6 run that pushed their lead to 18-12. A Nick Rusk kill pulled Emerson within 14-12 in the third set, but JWU ended the match on a 13-4 run.

The Wildcats continued their offensive prowess, hitting .354 while holding the Lions to .052. JWU limited Emerson's offense by producing 33 digs and five blocks.

Leading all players with a match-high 12 kills was GNAC Rookie of the Week Dondre Crump while hitting .429. Senior Kanila Chang was next with eight kills. Setter Cameron Ponce dished out 34 assists and Alex Seda picked up a match-high 12 digs.

Rusk topped the Lions with seven kills. Mark Piorkowski had six kills and six digs.

Courtesy of JWU Athletics Communications.


Score: Lasell College, 2; Emmanuel College, 3 (25-19, 25-17, 21-25, 18-25, 10-15)
Records: Lasell College Lasers (9-21, GNAC 6-8); Emmanuel College Saints (15-15, GNAC 8-6)
Location: Boston, Mass. – Andy Yosinoff Court
Date: Tuesday, April 10th, 2018

THE LEAD: The Emmanuel College Men's Volleyball team dropped the first two sets of the Great Northeast Athletic Conference men's volleyball first round playoffs matchup on Tuesday evening before surging back to win the final three sets, (25-19, 25-17, 21-25, 18-25, 10-15), led by junior opposite hitter Kevin Orsley (San Jose, Calif.) with a match high 21 kills.



  • The Lasers scored first on the evening and continued to hold control of the set, taking an 8-3 lead led by Andy Henriquez's (Lawrence, Mass.) three kills.
  • Emmanuel began to close the lead, 12-8, with two kills by Orsley and two service errors by the Lasers before Lasell went on an 8-3 run to extend the lead back to 20-11.
  • The Saints were not able to overcome the mid-set deficit as Greg Monteiro (New Bedford, Mass.) and Scott Sterenberg (Oceanside, N.Y.) closed out the set with two late set kills, 25-19.


  • Both teams traded early set points due to offensive errors, but the Lasers continued their offensive attack taking a 10-3 lead off of two assisted blocks by Henriquez and Janci Soto (Lawrence, Mass.).
  • The Saints had to work from behind again and pulled within six by two kills by Orsley and one kill by John Carroll(Massapequa, N.Y.), down 16-10.
  • Emmanuel continued to battle throughout the end of the set, but kills by Monteiro and Soto were too much for the Saints, losing the second set 25-17.


  • Lasell jumped out in front of the Saints with a quick 6-1 lead in the third set on four kills and two attacking errors by the Saints, but Emmanuel swung back to close the gap 9-7 on back to back kills by Erik English (Semi Valley, Calif.) and Mike Kokoros (Braintree, Mass).
  • The teams traded points back and forth throughout the middle of the set until the Saints were finally able to take the lead, 18-17, off of a kill by English from Seamus McDonagh (Long Beach, N.Y.).
  • The Saints held on to the lead through the end of the set, closing out the Lasers on back to back kills by Orsley and a solo block by Alex Silva (Jamaica Plain, Mass.), 25-21.


  • Lasell came out of the break with a strong offensive attack to go up on the Saints 4-2 before Emmanuel scored seven quick points, taking the lead 9-5, led by the blocking efforts of Carroll and McDonagh.
  • Emmanuel was able to extend the lead to five points on kills by Orsley and Silva before forcing a Lasell timeout late in the set, controlling the set 16-11.
  • The Saints were able to close out the set, 25-18, to tie the match at two apiece on late set kills by English and Kokoros.


  • The Lasers forced the Saints to take an early timeout in the final set after taking a quick 3-1 lead, led by back to back assisted blocks by Soto and Monteiro.
  • The Saints came back to tie the game at three before going on a 6-3 run, highlighted by a service ace by Orsley and two kills by Kokoros, to take the lead back 9-6
  • Emmanuel never looked back and was able to close out the match, 15-10, on two solo blocks by Silva and McDonagh, and a final point kill by Orsley.


  • Orsley recorded a game-high 21 kills for the Saints, only his second twenty point kill match of the season, along with 12 digs and one service ace.
  • Sterenberg of the Lasers recorded a team-high 11 kills, along with one dig, one service ace and a .185 kill percentage on the day.
  • The Saints were able to inch out the Lasers in the offensive columns, recording a .203 kill percentage in comparison to a .171 kill percentage for Lasell.


  • Emmanuel College will be back in action on Thursday, April 12th as they head to top seeded Rivier University for the Great Northeast Athletic Conference semifinal matchup at 7:00PM

    Courtesy of Emmanuel Athletics Communications.

Tuesday, April 10 - First Round
Game 1: #4 Emmanuel 3, #5 Lasell 2 | BOX
Game 2: #3 Johnson & Wales 3, #6 Emerson 0 | BOX

Thursday, April 12 - Semifinals
Game 3: #3 Johnson & Wales at #2 Wentworth - 7:00 PM
Game 4: #4 Emmanuel at #1 Rivier - 7:00 PM

Saturday, April 14 - Final
Game 5: Highest remaining seed

Founded in 1995, the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) is an NCAA Division III association made up of 13 member institutions and over 3,000 student-athletes across the New England region. Each year, the GNAC sponsors and administers 20 championships, while balancing academic integrity, athletic opportunities and community involvement.