Stars Notch Historic Victory In NCAA First Round

Dominican defeated Hunter 3-0 in the NCAA First Round
Dominican defeated Hunter 3-0 in the NCAA First Round

Courtesy of Dominican University

KENOSHA, Wis. -- The Dominican University men's volleyball program has accomplished a lot in five short years, tonight reaching another milestone with a three-set (25-16, 25-15, 25-22) win over the Hunter College Hawks at Carthage College in the opening round of the 2018 NCAA Division III Men's Volleyball Championship. The win marks the Stars first win in the national tournament, putting the Stars back in the national quarterfinals for the second consecutive season.

"Congrats to Hunter on a great season," commented Dan Pawlikowski, the Stars' first-year head coach. "Any year that comes to close in the NCAA Tournament is a success."

"We had a great start tonight and did a great job to finish the sweep. I'm very proud and humbled for this program to earn their first tournament win and return to the Elite Eight. We are looking forward to another tremendous opponent in Carthage tomorrow and will be prepared for a huge home court crowd for them. I'm hoping for another great match of volleyball from both teams."

The Stars hit .396 in the winning effort, knocking down 53 kills on 111 total attacks while committing just nine errors. Ethan Klosak was spectacular for Dominican, tallying a match-high 18 kills on 34 swings while committing just one hitting error. The sophomore added 14 digs for his fifth double-double effort of the season.

Adam Eboli added ten kills on 19 attacks while Luke Spicer knocked down nine kills and Jake Sidner terminated seven rallies. Rookie setter Jack McGuire collected 45 assists on the night.

The Stars trailed just once the entire match and kept the Hawks down, going 41-for-55 on sideouts. The Dominican back row collected 46 digs while surrendering just 29 kills to the Hawks. After Klosak's 14 digs, senior libero David DeMarco added 11 digs while the Dominican block posted five total blocks.

With the win, the Stars advance to tomorrow's quarterfinal match where they will meet the Carthage College Red Men at 6:00 p.m. in Kenosha, Wisconsin. The winner advances to the NCAA Division III Men's Volleyball Championship semifinal round which takes place next Friday in Kenosha.