HARTSVILLE, S.C. – The Coker College men's volleyball team cruised to the Independent Volleyball Association (IVA) title game with two victories Friday (Apr. 7) evening. The first victory for the Navy and Gold came against Lincoln Memorial by a 3-1 (25-22, 25-17, 31-33, 25-21) final, followed by a dominant 3-0 (25-16, 25-17, 25-20) sweep over Alderson Broaddus in game two.
After pulling ahead two sets to none over Lincoln Memorial, the Cobras dropped a back and forth 33-31 third set. However, Coker squashed any chances of a Railsplitter comeback with a 25-21 fourth set victory. During the set, the Cobras used a trio of three-point scoring streaks to pull ahead of Lincoln Memorial. Leading 22-21, the Navy and Gold rallied for the final three points of the set with a kill from Luca Berger and two errors committed by the Railsplitters.
Artur Cabral led the Cobras offensively during the match with a team-high 15 kills. Luca Berger had an excellent match from the offensive end as well with 12 kills and a .524 kill percentage. Defensively, the Navy and Gold received notable performances from Stephen Porras (14 digs) and Luca Berger (eight total blocks).
In the second match of the night, the Cobras cruised past the Alderson Broaddus Battlers with a 3-0 sweep. During the third and final set of the match, the Cobras held a tight 23-20 advantage over the Battlers. Next, Coker scored back-to-back points off a kill from Sanjae Holloway and an error committed by Alderson Broaddus.
Artur Cabral led the Cobras offensively once again with a team-leading 11 kills. Aleksa Bijelic dished out 15 assists in the match and broke the Coker men's volleyball career assists record. The record was previously held Ricardo Ferrer with 1,679 assists. Bijelic shattered that record with 1,683 career assists with the Navy and Gold. On the defensive end of the ball, Gabriel Castro led Coker in digs with seven and Sanjae Holloway, Shane King, and Stephen Porras each had two total blocks.
As mentioned, the Cobras will compete in the IVA Championship tomorrow (Apr. 8) at 3 p.m. Coker will play the winner of the Lincoln Memorial and Alderson Broaddus match that begins tomorrow at 1 p.m. in the DeLoach Center.
McDonald's Player of the Match (Lincoln Memorial) – Luca Berger
McDonald's Player of the Match (Alderson Broaddus) – Aleksa Bijelic