FORT WAYNE, Ind. – In a battle of two teams ranked in the AVCA top-15, the 14th ranked IPFW men’s volleyball team fell to conference rival and No. 1 ranked Loyola Chicago 3-0 (25-20, 25-13, 25-22).
Andrew Sellan had a team-high 11 kills in the loss for the Mastodons. Bryan Saunders added five kills while Nick Smalter and Eddie Rivera each had four.
Omar Rivera led the ‘Dons with 25 assists and Luis Bertran had a team-high seven digs.
IPFW scored the first two points of the opening set on kills by Sellan and Smalter. Loyola took the lead for good as the Ramblers went on a 5-1 run, to lead 5-3. With IPFW trailing by one at 13-12, the Ramblers scored five straight points as the ‘Dons never pulled closer down the stretch.
The Mastodons never led in the second frame as Loyola closed out the set with a 13-3 advantage after IPFW had pulled the score to 12-10.
Trailing early in the third set, a kill by Sellan capped off a 5-1 run for the ‘Dons, taking its first lead of the set at 6-5. The two sides began to battle, exchanging six leads and 11 tie scores, as neither team was able to gain more than a two-point advantage. With the set tied 17-17, the Ramblers scored three straight points to lead 20-17, as the Mastodons were unable to recover.
The match was the 19th time that IPFW faced the top ranked team in the nation.
IPFW next travels to Ohio State for a match on April 4 with first serve set for 7 p.m.