KINGSTON, Ont. – The Ryerson Rams men’s volleyball team held off a late charge from the home side to secure a 3-1 victory (25-17, 25-18, 20-25, 25-22) over the Queen’s Gaels on Friday night in Kingston.

BOXSCORE

Though it’s early in the season to call this a must win, it does stand as an important victory for the Rams. With the new format in men’s volleyball with two divisions, the Rams and Gaels are expected to battle for the top spot in the East division and a win early in the season puts Ryerson in a good position down the road.

The Rams offence was firing on all cylinders in the first two sets before they came back down to earth. Through the opening two sets the Rams were hitting 41.5% for a kill percentage compared to 5.6% on the Gaels side and the visitors looked on their way to an easy sweep.

Despite Ryerson still posting a modest 21.4% rate in the third set, it was the Gaels that found their rhythm as they hit for 14 kills compared to just four errors for a 35.7% clip. Queen’s had been struggling to pass the ball well to set up their offence but they seemed to figure out the Rams in the third to stave off the sweep and force a fourth set.

With a little momentum on their side, Queen’s jumped out to a 10-5 lead in the fourth set and it looked for a moment like this match would go the distance. Trailing 16-13 coming out of the technical timeout, the Rams took advantage of some Gaels miscues to erase the deficit and take a 17-16 lead.

The Rams never relinquished their lead and a kill from Brendan Kewin (Milton, Ont.) sealed the deal for the Rams.

All-star Lucas Coleman (Brooklin, Ont.) continued his hot start to the season with a team-high 16 kills while Uchenna Ofoha (Markham, Ont.) added 11 kills of his own with an impressive 55.6% kill rate to his name.

Queen’s Markus Trence sported a 21 kill and 24 point night in the losing effort.

The Rams (2-1) return to action on Saturday night when they take on the RMC Paladins (1-1) starting at 8:00 p.m.