March 22, 2013
CHICAGO – Head coach Shane Davis earned his 200th career win on Friday night as No. 14 Loyola University Chicago swept Quincy in three-straight, 25-13, 25-16, 26-24. Joseph Smalzer (Palos Heights, Ill.) paced the floor with 13 kills and collected seven service aces to rewrite Loyola’s record books as the redshirt junior is now first with 143 career service aces. Peter Hutz (Whitefish Bay, Wis.) led all players with a career-high five total blocks.
Smalzer opened the match for Loyola, blasting two kills and consecutive service aces to put the Ramblers ahead 5-2. The Hawks worked to recover from the early deficit, but back-to-back service aces from Thomas Jaeschke (Wheaton, Ill.) broken up by a kill from Cody Caldwell (Newport Beach, Calif.) catapulted the Ramblers to a 12-5 advantage. Quincy called a timeout to end Loyola’s run as the Hawks closed in on the 14-9 lead. A 7-1 run by the Ramblers ended the set, 25-13, as Loyola hit .619 with Caldwell and Eric Daliege (Orland Park, Ill.) teaming up for a final block.
The teams battled for control at the start of the second, but Loyola took advantage of Quincy errors as a block by Daliege and Hutz powered the Ramblers ahead 7-4. The Hawks clawed their way back, tying the set at eight before Loyola scored three unanswered points to force a Quincy timeout with the Ramblers leading 13-10. Hutz anchored the net, notching two blocks followed by a kill and consecutive service aces from Jaeschke to protect Loyola’s 22-14 lead. Caldwell blasted a kill to give his team set point and another Smalzer ace closed the set 25-16.
It was a close third frame with the teams swapping the lead and tying the game six times before Loyola scored three unanswered points to jump ahead 10-7. Quincy refused to back down, however, going on a run of its own to tie the game again, 12-all, forcing a Rambler timeout. Loyola returned from the break with a 4-1 run, closed by a block from Daliege and Dainis Berzins (Brinklow, Md.). Quincy was determined to stay in the game, holding on to a two-point deficit before blasting a trio of kills to tie the game, 18-all. The Hawks would take a short-lived lead before a kill and ace by Smalzer put Loyola back out front, 22-21. It was back-and-forth from there with Loyola denying Quincy set point behind a Daliege and Hutz block followed by a kill from Smalzer to end the match, 26-24.
“We opened the match playing well and executing our game plan,” said Davis. “Quincy came back and really battled us in set three. It was great to see our team pull through and win the match in crunch time.”
Loyola improves to 14-8 on the season and is now 5-3 in MIVA play. The Ramblers continue on the road tomorrow night, taking on conference rival Lindenwood at 7 p.m.