By Josh Beneteau
The Ryerson men’s volleyball team (9-5) was unable to stop the train that is the McMaster University Marauders (14-0) — falling in four sets. It was Ryerson’s first home game since the holiday break and puts their 2014 record at 1-2.
“We came into the game with no pressure on ourselves and I think that let us play risk free,” left-side hitter Alex Dawson said. “We tried our best, got a set and were pretty happy with the result overall.”
Robert Wojcik led the team with 13 kills — giving him 203 in the season and moving him into second in the OUA. Brandon Jordan came off the bench and had 11 kills and Marc Reardon had 10. Reardon also led on the defensive side with five blocks, while Jeff Ardron and Jordan each had four.
For the Marauders, Jori Mantha led with 13 kills.
“These are always the most fun games to play, I love teams that hit the ball” Wojcik said. “I got Jori a couple times and he got me a couple times, so these are always the best kind of games.”
The game started slow with neither team really pulling ahead in the first set before McMaster won with a six-point difference — the largest margin between the teams. Then Ryerson responded in the second set by keeping McMaster from taking the lead for most of it.
“In the second set me played error free,” head coach Mirek Porosa said. “And we served out of our minds.”
The Rams came very close to winning the third set — coming back from a 21-17 deficit to tie it at 22. But in the fourth set, McMaster kept pounding the ball and easily closed the game with a 25-20 win.
“We had chances [to win] but then they aced us,” Porosa said. “I think that was the key momentum switch of the game.”
The game also marked newcomer Lucas Coleman’s first home game with the Rams. He started, but was replaced by more experienced Jordan late in the first quarter and didn’t return.
Libero Will Otten was also taken out after the first quarter and replaced by Stefan Ristic.
“I decided in the second set to go back to the line up from last semester,” Porosa said. “They are familiar with each other’s tendencies and it seemed to work.”
The Rams next game is against Western University, another top team in the OUA, at the Mattamy Athletic Centre on Saturday.