2020 Men's Club Volleyball Intro
As Fr. Ted Hesburgh once said, “Hello everyone!”
To our many fans, far and wide: The Boys are Back. Again.
Led by new team President, “Old Man” Brian Messina, the Irish are looking forward to another successful year in which we win as many hearts as games. Aiding in this is returning Senior outside hitter/team dad/Vice President of Volleyball Operations and Bonding, Mike Stefan. After a long semester abroad in Italy, it looks like Stef is ready to show us his skills #Prego. No more fine wines, just swinging down lines. Forget the fancy art halls, from now on, he will only bounce balls. Also back from Italy is Senior opposite hitter, Nick Oddo. Oddo, an architect on and off the court, is ready to show us what that lefty arm swing can do (and a hint: it’s more than just pin-ups and sharp illustrations of timeless structures).
Unfortunately, the team will be without Junior outside John “Beef” Holland this semester, for he will be rejoicing in the fine wines and art halls of Rome as his predecessors, Stef and Oddo. We presume there will be “no, stop” to his shenanigans.
The squad this year will be better than ever. We have no weaknesses. With almost the whole team back for more, just wait to see what we have in store.
As for the new members of the NCAA Division 1 Men’s Varsity Club Volleyball Team, they provide nothing but necessary additions to the machine Messina has built. Sammy Mansfield (Sophomore) decided USC wasn’t enough and transferred over to join the good guys. He will bring his intellect, delicate finesse, and uncanny versatility to the court in order to help in big moments. Jack Redford (Freshman) eloquently displays his Canadian ferocity on the court, earning himself a spot as an opposite hitter on the Irish. Jack brings the thunder every time he steps on the court. His ability to swing sharp angle will not go unnoticed this season. Finally, the team is excited to see Tucker Watson (freshman) in the middle blocking position this season. Tugboat is a house at the net and Tool City on offense. Good luck stopping these new members this year, Midwest 10. It’s our time.
The Boys of Spring head to Indiana University this week to test the waters. Although we are not bringing the full arsenal, we are looking forward to competing with other clubs for the first time this season. As always, we will work tirelessly to achieve the best result possible. More to come, stay tuned...
Irish Finish Better Than Copper in Nationals 2019
During my freshman year of Notre Dame Men’s Club Volleyball, there was a rallying cry that echoes in my mind to this day. It was said at every tournament. It was said at every practice. It was the name of our volleyball group chat. “Better than Copper.”
That 2016 team fought valiantly, all the way to a Copper bracket championship. But we have continually sought more. Well, alumni, you can rest easy. We did it.
The Fighting Irish came into the National tournament as an undervalued four seed, a slanderous betrayal in my personal opinion. It was no matter. The Irish were unfazed. They opened against a tough Indiana team, pushing them to a tight 26-24 loss in the first set and ultimately a loss in the match. The Irish rebounded and fought hard against Florida the fifth seed in the tournament. A gut-wrenching third set loss 15-13 was hard to swallow. However, the Irish finished strong beating a very talented UCSD team in two sets.
However, due to the tiebreakers, the Irish had to play UCSD again. It’s hard to beat a good team three times in a row, and it wasn’t meant to be for the Irish. The loss sent them to a consolation bracket for the next day.
The Irish came out determined in day 2. The Irish lost their first match to a warmed-up Utah State team in another tough 3-set match. However, they bounced back, beating a strong Michigan State team in 2 sets, guaranteeing a place in the vaunted Bronze bracket. It was a triumph for the team, securing a finish that truly was better than copper.
In the bronze bracket, the Irish ran into a tough Missouri team. The Irish fought hard again before suffering another brutal 15-13 3rd set defeat. It was a trying tournament at times for the team, but full of high-quality play from all members.
It is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to Senior Middle Blocker and President Jack Waltrich. We will carry his legacy with us forever. However, we have Brian “Old Man” Messina taking over as president. I can guarantee he has full support of the team after earning zero votes against him during the election process. He may or may not have been running unopposed.
In all sincerity, it was a great season for the Irish. Returning most of the roster, the Irish are poised for a very strong 2020 season, and I already can’t wait for it.
Irish Ready for 2018-2019 Title Challenge
The boys are back! The football team is out to a solid 7-0 record, which is pretty good considering our pedigree as a Club Volleyball school. Anyway, Go Irish!
The team is under the direction of new Club President Senior Jack Waltrich. Of greater note is the acquisition of highly-touted equipment manager Senior Jon Reuvers. His high volleyball IQ and ability to dunk are welcome additions to the team.
Onto the new kids, the team is excited to add talent at positions all over the court. We add a lot of talent at the pin hitter position. Tyler “Tiny” Bergeron and Adam “Adam” Schulte are joining a talented core of outside hitters. Matthew Johnson is a quality right side who is never going to live down wearing a Kobe jersey to tryouts. Lastly, John Folts is a versatile player who will probably play as much outside as Vince played setter last year (Sorry).
Matt “Cali” Kerins joins a talented slate of setters and Mechanical Engineers on our roster (but seriously, why are there so many of them?). Middle blocker Christian Pawelek is another strong addition to the roster. I have no joke for him. Good guy though.
The team is anxiously awaiting the return of Slater (#Slater) Chesser and Angelo (#Slater) Liu from their travels abroad and is saddened by the upcoming loss of official team dad Mike Stefan for the spring semester.
We are confident that the men’s volleyball team will not be overshadowed by the recent victories of the football team and will firmly establish once and for all that Notre Dame is a club volleyball school. The team is poised to challenge for a championship once more!
Irish Rally To A Better Than Copper Finish at Nationals
It seemed as if everything was going against the Notre Dame men’s volleyball team heading into the 2018 season. Great player and better Social Chair Teddy Edwards suffered a freak injury that left us without him for the season. Did it happen so he would have an excuse not to hang out with us? We may never know, but either way this writer isn’t convinced.
The Irish, after busting brackets on their way to a 3rd place finish in the MIVA Championships, came into Nationals at a very underrated 46th place. The Fighting Irish were not to be discouraged, however. The Irish plug walked their way into the hearts of the fans in St. Louis.
In a very Michael Morris-esque move, Dad (read as William Morgenlander) missed Day 1 in order to handle ‘real life’ responsibilities. The team had to soldier on without him and turned in a solid performance on Day 1. On Day 2, the Irish turned it on after a tough morning loss to Penn State. The Fighting Irish came out top in their group to go into the Silver bracket on the final day with wins over UTSA, UC San Diego, and Illinois.
There was no finer performance than when Sophomore Brian Messina showed off the front row prowess that so many of us have been waiting for out of him. Down 30-31, UC San Diego dared to challenge the block of Messina and on the final play of the set, the UCSD player was so intimidated by the block in front of him that he skied the ball, handing the Irish the set and the match in the process.
The final day saw the debut of ‘Team Future’ who played well in their first match as a unit. After a first set working out the kinks, the second set was tightly contested. Our seniors were able to take a bow in their final match, leaving behind a lasting legacy on the Notre Dame program. On the whole, this writer can only describe the performance by the Fighting Irish that weekend as ‘electric.’
It is with a sad heart that we say goodbye to our seniors. Teddy Edwards was the most elite Social Chair in Notre Dame’s history, and his jersey will be hanging in the rafters forever. Mike Rossetto, our favorite chill father, will be missed on and off the court. We bid a fond farewell to RA Ben Dalgarn, whose unforgettable three days in Kansas City have left a lasting impression on all of us. For his workout regiment that kept us in shape all season, we will miss Nicholas Pittman and his saucy sandwich-making skills. Last but not least, we will miss President William Morgenlander even if we’re pretty sure he’s leaving us to use his last two years of eligibility elsewhere.
This writer can assure you that the loosest team in America will be back again next year- ready to bring a trophy back to South Bend.
Irish Add New Faces For 2017-2018
The Notre Dame men’s club volleyball team is preparing to build on the success of last year following a run to the gold bracket at Nationals. We may never know what made last year’s team so successful, whether it was bloody-nosed Ben or George Max Balzer’s coaching prowess. Special recognition is in order for Max Balzer, Jorge Diaz, and Luke Ladowski for their four years of hard work, even if they don’t love us enough to use their 5th and 6th years of eligibility. Senior Kevin Shin thought it was for the best to leave this season and test the waters in free agency. We also extend a fond farewell to Michael Morris, graduating this winter, even if he left us for the track team, then Chile, and now for real life. We will miss his easy-going nature on the volleyball court and his constant reminders that winning isn’t everything. They will all be missed greatly. However, the team is hopeful that its new additions will bolster Notre Dame’s reputation as a club volleyball school. The team is excited to welcome six new players to the squad. We added four pin hitters to fill the void left by our seniors. Sophomores Mike (Nightlocke) Stefan and Nick (Oddo) Oddo are strong additions to the squad, even if they didn’t like us enough to tryout last year. We also added freshman John Holland for his magnificent singing voice and Owen Gallahue (we met at Domerfest so he must be pretty cool). We couldn’t have just one long, tall, and handsome gentleman on the team, so Alex Witte joins a deep core of middle blocker talent (#Slater). Last but not least, freshman Vince Reisel is a versatile player who we’ve let do pretty much everything other than set. The team is well equipped to succeed this year, and we have no doubt that we can win the ‘ship this year.
Irish End 2016-2017 Season in Gold Bracket at Nationals
The Irish returned to Kansas City for 2017 NCVF National Championship and, following a truly heroic performance, placed 9th nationally. The week began with tragedy when President/Coach/Perennial All Star George (Max) Balzer sprained his ankle in training. Rather than be denied, he threw on his best Hawaiian shirts and coached the Irish to their third best finish in the storied history of the program. Integral to the effort was Ben Dalgarn whose energetic play earned him All-American honors. The Irish were further bolstered by their indispensable veterans, Luke Ladowski and Jorge Diaz, who played admirably. We wish our newest alumni the best on all of their future endeavors!
Alumni Game Set for September 16th
Drop all of your real-world responsibilities and hit the treadmills, former players, the date for the alumni vs. current team game has finally been set. The game will take place the Friday before this year's Notre Dame vs. Michigan State football game at home. Details including the time and location on campus are to be determined, but stay tuned for updates.
Irish Don a New Look
With big shoes to fill left by last year's seniors, particularly Team Apparel Manager Andrew Lee, the squad was hopeful heading into tryouts this year. Though it seemed the universe itself was conspiring to prevent the team from even holding tryouts this year, the squad was able to corral a strong group of six new players to add to the ranks. At the setter position, freshmen Angelo Lui and Dan Laskowski look to make immediate contributions with their athleticism and buttery hands. At the middle blocker position, freshman Slater Chesser and Sophomore Jack Waltrich have already begun construction on the spacious, two-story town home that will roof any defender that dares hit near it. Pin hitter Kevin Shin will surely dazzle on the court this year with his versatility and ability to hit around any block. Lastly, defensive mastermind Brian Messina will surely bolster the Irish's defensive presence this season, that is, if he can tape his wrist in time to make it out onto the court. The Irish eagerly await the return of setter Mike Rossetto from his Aussie adventures while marching on toward the regular season with high hopes of solidifying this fine university's status as a men's club volleyball school.
To all incoming freshman and anyone else who has an interest in playing club volleyball, sophomore to senior, we are holding open tryouts on Tuesday September 6th and Thursday September 8th from 7:30 to 9:30 in the Joyce Center Blue Room. Whether you're a high school all-american or just pretty good at keeping a balloon off the floor, you're invited to tryout. Try to make both nights if able. If you have any questions about tryouts or the team in general, please contact president Max Balzer at email@example.com or anyone else listed on the "contact us" page. Looking forward to seeing everyone.
It was with heavy hearts and watery eyes that the Irish said goodbye to four outstanding seniors at the end of the 2015-2016 campaign: Kevin Weithers, John Rumer, Spencer Castillo, and Andrew Lee. Kevin, known for his good looks and impecable fashion sense, will be dearly missed on and off the court. Never again will collegiate club volleyball bear witness to a buttery John "Johnny Hammastix" Rumer cross-court back set, and for this, we weep. The team will surely miss Spencer, the squad's fearless leader, who with his intuition and thrift, was able to save the team a couple of dollars when we needed it most. Though it is not certain exactly how much he actually worked on acquiring team apparel, Andrew Lee, the "Team Apparel Manager," was a vital asset to the team's success and will be missed. We wish these club volleyball veterans a successful and restful retirement. Thank you for your service, gentlemen.
1/27/16 Irish Start Strong
On January 24, the ND Volleyball Club Team participated in its fist tournament of the season in Ann Arbor, Michigan. In spite of not having key players, like its captain Steven Dusing, the team strived and went on till the final four of the gold bracket of the tournament. Along the way the Irish won 8 straight sets, beating Michigan State B Team, BGSU, and other two teams. In the quarter finals, the Irish lost in a well competed game, 31-33, 25-22, and 15-11, to the alimni team of Eastern Michigan.
Throughout the tournament, the team was able to experimented with diffferent line ups, and test where it was at in comparison to other club teams. As a matter of fact, the ND club volleball team was the only one to make it to the final four. The other final four teams were alumni teams, while no other club team felt short.
Again, there is room for improvement, but the team was able to show what it is made up.
10/10/15 Irish Select New Leadership
With the season drawing to a close, the team looked to the future with boisterous elections to determine the outlook of the team in the following year.
President: Spencer Castillo
In an absolute landslide Senior Spencer Castillo was elected to become the team's fearless leader. He brings with him a long history of competing at a high level and a deep understanding of the game. Here's to hoping that he doesn't suffer another back injury while carrying the burden of leadership.
Vice President: John Rumer
Ignoring term limits and throwing caution to the wind, senior John Rumer was elected to be the vice president for another season. With a management style that's more Dan Quayle than Dick Cheney, John continues his strategy of picking his spots carefully, and exerting effort only when absolutely necessary.
Treasurer: William Morganlander
More familiar with boson particles than budgeting, neophyte sophomore William Morganlander was selected to handle the team's finances for the upcoming year. His relative inexperience can be viewed as a positive as its doubtful he'll know how to embezzle funds from the club.
Secretary: Michael Morris
In what was the easiest choice on the ballot, sophomore Michael Morris was selected to a position that primarily just has to edit this webpage. He plans to inflate his stats when transcribing them, and only post pictures of himself.
10/17/14 Irish Prepare for First Tournament
On November 8th, the Men’s Club Volleyball Team will compete in the the Flyer Classic, at the University of Dayton, Ohio. After a few weeks of practice, the team is starting to synchronize with its new members and is looking good. On another note, Junior Spencer Castillo returns to practice after being out for a year due to a various injuries. The team hopes to have him back at a 100% as soon as possible. The team also expects Sophomore Max Balzer, who will undergo surgery next week on his knee, to be back to full health by the start of the Spring season. Results and summary of tournament will be posted on our website after the tournament. GO IRISH!
10/10/14 Young Talent Strengthens Team
After losing five key Seniors last season, the team gets recharged with young talent.
This past month, the ND Club Volleyball Team hosted try-outs and selected seven new members for its squad. Among them, Junior and former practice-player, Kevin Weithers and six Freshmen.
The six selected freshman will stablish a strong foundation for an elite team for years to come. Anthony Daegele and William Morgenlander, defensive specialists, will help establish cosistent passing and active defense. Michael Morris, with his impresive setting, will look to keep the opponent's blockers and defense on thier toes. Teddy Edwards and Ben Dalgarn will look to fill the team's vacancy at the Middle Blocker position, left by the graduation of former middles: Scott Canna, Ronnie Seman, and Kevin Timperman. Nicholas Pittman, a man with an incredible verticle will look to bolster the offense at the outside hitter position.
4/5/14 Notre Dame Wins Pool Play at Nationals, Loses in Silver
The Fighting Irish were seeded 4th in their pool play at Nationals this year, coming off a disappointing showing at MIVA's. With starting outside Carl Nolet back to health and setter John Rumer recovering from a hand injury, the Irish looked to have a better performance at Nationals. They started off the tournament well beating Maryland and USC but losing a match to Cincinnati in 3 games. But since there was a three way tie for first, the loss in 3 games instead of 2 to Cincinnati put Notre Dame one game ahead of any other team in the pool, and they took the first seed going into the Gold Bracket Pool Play. They started off the next morning by beating Illinois in 2 games, but lost a match in 2 to Sacremento and two very close games with the score of 25-23 both times. This resulted in another tie breaker match, and the Irish had to play Sacremento again. They could not pull out the win and would compete the next day in the Silver match. The final game was played against Michigan by many of the graduating seniors. The Irish did not advance, but everyone got to play, even Scott Canna who had been injured all season. The Irish will be graduating 6 seniors in the fall: Brian Bucciarelli, Scott Canna, Liam Gallagher, Patrick Laskowski, Ronald Seman, and Kevin Timperman, in addition to losing architect Luke Ladowski for one year as he studies abroad in Rome. The team wishes the graduating seniors the best and look forward to a rebuilding year with anticipation of much new talent in the incoming class. There are many holes to fill on the team, but the Irish are hopeful for another great season with the hopes of competing in the National Championship again like they did in 2011 and 2012.
2/23/14 Notre Dame Upset in Hoosier/Illini Classic
Notre Dame entered the Hoosier/Illini Classic as the number 2 seed in their playoff pool. The team had a strong start Saturday morning against Purdue B, winning the match in two games. Their success followed into their next match against Northern Illinois-Chicago, maintaining their perfect tournament record as they prepared to play the number 1 seed in their pool, Virginia Tech. Notre Dame closely won the first game, but was handily beaten the second game. Regaining their nerves, Notre Dame came out and won the match against Virginia Tech, putting them in a challenge round against Missouri. Beating Missouri gave ND the 2nd overall seed in the Gold Bracket Playoffs. They hoped to enter into Sunday and continue their undefeated match record against Illinois State. However the early morning game was again a problem for the team. As in the Back to the Hardwood Classis, Notre Dame was upset in their first Gold Bracket game, resulting in a very short morning. Apart from Sunday's performance, the team was pleased with their play this weekend. They look to prepare for the upcoming Midwest 10 Round Robin Conference Tournament at NIU next weekend, and figure out a way to bring their A-game to the second day bracket play.
1/18/14 Victory at the House of Noise
After being defeated by Michigan State earlier this year in the Hardwood Classic, the Notre Dame Men's Club Volleyball team came to play Michigan State again at the annual House of Noise Match with a desire to win. Lacking the same two key players as they were in the Hardwood Classic, Scott Cana and Spencer Castillo (who are questionable to return for the remainder of the season), the team knew that their playing style would have to be smart and scrappy in order to beat Michigan State. The first game was won by Michigan State as Notre Dame struggled to communicate on the court and committed a good amount of errors. The second game started the same way, but near the end, the team pulled together and came out with a win. Middles, Kevin Timperman and Ronnie Seman (cheered on by his fans), were essential to the win. The next two games followed suit, Michigan State winning the third and Notre Dame winning the fourth, which took the match into the tie breaker 15-point game. Notre Dame took and early lead and came out on top, reclaiming their title as Victor of the House of Noise. The team now continues preparation for their Conference Championships and Hoosier-Illini Classic near the end of February.
11/10/13 Hardwood Classic Shows ND Potential This Year
Despite not advancing in the playoff bracket like the team had hoped, the Notre Dame Men's Club Volleyball team had a great showing at the Hardwood Classic that showed the potential the team has coming into this season. The team was able to compete in the Gold Bracket, despite the injuries of key players: Scott Canna and Spencer Castillo. Freshmen Max Balzer and Carl Nolet, stepped up this weekend and did great jobs filling the necessary roles of Middle Blocker and Outside Hitter. Sophomore John Rumer was also a heavy contributor to the success of the team. His excellent sets enabled the offense to exploit weaknesses in the opposition's blocking defense this weekend. The team's success with its limited roster during this tournament can only be taken as an indication of what it may accomplish with a full and healthy roster, which it expects to have coming into the spring tournament season.
10/5/13 ND adds Four Freshmen to Roster
The Notre Dame Men's club volleyball team looked to replace their four graduating seniors this fall with young talent. The team brought on four freshmen at this years tryouts with a diverse skill set that they expect to utilize this coming season. The four freshmen include:
Dan Andree: A right side hitter from Colts Neck, New Jersey. As the only left-handed player on the club team, Dan will add a new dynamic to the team.
Max Balzer: A middle blocker from Holleywood, California. Max will have to quickly learn the pace of college volleyball as he looks to fill a large hold in the club roster after the graduation of starting Middle Jim Waclawik and in anticipiation for the graduation of the remaining three middle on the team who are all current seniors.
Jorge Diaz: An outside hitter from San Juan, Puerto Rico. Jorge has a powerful jump serve and attack that will be much needed this season without starting outsides Kevin Padden and Robert Bauer who both graduated last year.
Carl Nolet: An outside hitter from Laguna Nigel, California. Carl is a very skilled player at multiple positions on the court and adds much versatility to the roster. The team expects Carl to be an important factor in this season's success.
4/15/13: ND Takes 1st in Bronze at Dallas Nationals
This past week, the Notre Dame Men’s club volleyball team competed in the NCVF National Championships located in Dallas, Texas. While the Irish finished the tournament with a record of 7-3, the three losses came at tough times, and the Irish were not able to compete for the gold medal again. However, the team did come together on the last day to secure the bronze division, defeating Chico State in a three set match.
On day one, the Irish opened up with back to back wins against Buffalo (25-11, 25-22) and Northern Arizona (25-18, 25-20). The Irish then played Cal in a 2012 National Championship rematch. Cal won the game using aggressive jump serves and lock down defense as ND lost in two sets (13-25, 24-26).
Day two opened up with a tough loss against UC Irvine. Irvine tirelessly dug every Irish swing, and was able to secure a comfortable victory as ND lost the match (20-25, 19-25). ND quickly bounced back with a win against Rice (25-21, 25-18) and then had one game left to determine final day seeding. Spectators asked “Who is Notre Dame going to beat”, to which the Irish said, Ohio State. Unfortunately, Ohio State came out swinging and won a close match in three (25-23, 24-26, 8-15), and the Irish were left to compete in the bronze division on championship day.
ND went perfect on Saturday though, defeating Cincinnati (25-20, 25-18), USC (25-21, 25-22), Rice(25,22, 25-20), and Chico State (25-18,23-25, 15-11) to take first place in the bronze division. ND was carried all day by the stellar play of Kevin Padden, Brian “Booch” Bucciarelli, and senior Patrick Condon. There was also a tremendous amount of support from the loyal ND parents, who traveled from all over the country to support their favorite men’s club volleyball team! The Irish ended on top of the bronze division, and ended the season with a memorable game for the seniors.
This tournament marked the end of the season for Notre Dame Volleyball, which means that the team will have to say goodbye to its three beloved seniors – Kevin Padden, Jim Waclawik, and Patrick Condon. Kevin Padden, team captain and 2011-2012 NCVF All American, will be missed both for his ability to make big plays on the volleyball court and his ability to manage games, plan seasons, and lead a team. Jim Waclawik’s high energy and stellar swings in the middle will be missed – and the team will most likely struggle to find a new member who rocks tear away pants like he does. The third senior, Pat Condon, leaves ND Men’s volleyball with a new “BreakDown” cheer that will likely stay with the club for a long time. His enthusiasm and energy will be greatly missed.
All in all, the ND Men’s Volleyball Team put together a great season. Thanks to all the fans, friends, and family members who were with us along the way! Go Irish!
3/24/2013: Irish Take Silver 1st at MSU MIVAS
The University of Notre Dame men’s club volleyball team traveled to Michigan State University this past weekend to compete in the MIVA tournament. Plagued with injuries and illness, the Irish were left to play without middle blockers, Scott Canna and Jim Waclawik, and outside hitter Spencer Castillo. Despite losing notable players, Notre Dame was able to play well and took 1st place in the Silver Division behind the spectacular play of Middle Blocker, Kevin Timperman. Timperman, a native of Centerville, Ohio, finished with an incredible performance against Northern Illinois University as he helped the Irish secure the Silver championship. Other notable performers were outside hitters Kevin Padden and Luke Ladowski, Libero Liam Gallaghar, and Right Side Steven Dusing.
On Saturday, the Irish struggled to adjust to a shorthanded roster. After a narrow victory against Adrian College, ND lost its next three matches to the University of Illinois, Grand Valley State, and Ohio State (See Scores).
Sunday started with another loss, this time to Lakeland College. That loss put the Irish down into the Silver division bracket – where they defeated Ohio State in two games, and then moved on the championship match after their semifinal match was forfeited. The Irish defeated the Northern Illinois Huskies in straight sets. Kevin Timperman blocked everything in sight, as he led both the offensive and defensive efforts at the net. Libero and D.S. Liam Gallaghar and Brian Buccerralli played stealer defense and were able to help the Irish offense swing efficiently and effectively.
The Irish now have two weeks to prepare for the NCVF National Tournament in Dallas. ND will look to content for a national championship so it is imperative that these two weeks are spent recovering, healing from injury and sickness, and preparing for the final push at the end of the year.
11/2012: ND Men's Club Volleyball Takes 2nd at MSU
The Notre Dame Men’s Club Volleyball team looked to start off the 2012 – 2013 season where they finished last year at the NCVF Championships. The defending national champions headed to Michigan State’s annual “Back to the Hardwood Classic” tournament and took second place out of 24 division 1 club men’s volleyball teams. The team returned five out of seven starters, including All Americans Rob Bauer and Liam Gallagher, and while there is room for improvement, the Irish started off the season with a strong initial showing.
In pool play on Saturday morning, the Irish played lights out, beating SUNY Buffalo, Central Michigan, and Minnesota – all in straight sets. Backed by the stellar play of NCVF Player of the Year Rob Bauer, club president, Kevin Padden, and upper classmen middles Jim Waclewik and Scott F. Canna – the Irish took care of each game early and allowed several freshmen to get some in game experience. Freshmen setter Johnny H. Rumer, outside hitter Luke Ladowski, and right side Spencer Castillo all saw significant playing time on the first day of play.
The defending national champion Fighting Irish had another strong performance during power pools as they first defeated the Air Force Academy in a high flying, hard hitting battle. Defensive specialist Brian Bucciarelli carried the defense throughout the game and was able to containi Air Force big outside hitters.
During Sunday’s bracket the Irish started out strong again, defeating Iowa, Purdue, and the University of Illinois all in straight sets. Freshman, Spencer Castillo played especially well. “He played like a crafty vet. His beach skillset came to the forefront today”, said Club Captain and President Kevin Padden, “Usually all we do is block and dig, but Spencer brought something else to the table and it was palpable”. Unfortunately, the Irish fell short to Virginia Tech in three sets in the championship match. Down 20-15 in game 1, Notre Dame fought back behind the strong hitting of Bauer and Padden and defense of Buccerrali and Castillo to win the first game. Virginia Tech got ahead in game 2 again, but the Irish could not fight back again, losing the second set 21-15. Set 3 started strong for the Irish with 4 straight points off of big blocks and digs from Kevin Padden, Scott Canna, and Bucciarelli. However, the relentless combination of big blocks and strong serves from Virginia Tech were too much for the Irish – who loss the third set 15-11. Overall, it was a great math with lots of action to entertain the sell out crowd. “Both teams played hard”, senior Pat Condon said. While falling short in the championship match is always disappointing, the Irish have a lot to look forward to. The strong freshmen class showed that they will be major contributors to the team this year, and junior setter Patrick Laskowski showed that he has the skills and leadership ability to control the high-powered Irish offense. With a good start at Michigan State, the Men’s Club Volleyball team will look to compete for another national championship again this year. The box scores are listed below.
09/2012: ND Men's Volleyball Picks New Freshmen
Last week, the Men's Club Voleyball team had one of the best tryouts in recent years. We decided to take 4 new freshmen to join the team. These freshmen are:
Spencer Castillo, Outside Hitter form San Diego California.
Andrew Lee, Libero/Defensive Specialist from Honolulu Hawaii.
John Rumer, Setter from Thousand Oaks California
Luke Ladowski, Outside Hitter from Lysle Illinois.
The four new freshmen will all make an immediate impact on the court for the Irish this year, helping us make another run at the National Championship.
More information about the players will be posted soon on the Roster Page.