By John Syms, Part-Time Writer
The 2023 men’s volleyball season for the Saint Vincent Bearcats started a few weeks ago, on Jan. 21. On Feb. 11, the men’s team picked up their third win of the season as they defeated Hilbert College at home 3-1. The following day, the Bearcats would lose to Penn State Behrend 3-1 and now stand with a 2-2 record in the Alleghany Mountain Collegiate Conference (AMCC). Their current overall record as of Feb. 14, is 3-4, which is already better than last year’s season record.
The men's volleyball team is one of the few SVC teams that does not compete in the Presidents Athletic Conference (PAC). Unlike women’s volleyball, the Bearcats compete in the AMCC, which features ten colleges, though it does include some teams that compete in the PAC, such as Geneva and Thiel. Last Season, the Hiram College volleyball team won the AMCC championship. The sport will be coming to the PAC in 2024, but the volleyball team is unsure if they will join the conference next season. Kate McCauley, second year head coach and who was the women’s volleyball assistant coach for four years, is confident the Bearcats will clinch a playoff spot for a chance to win the AMCC.
“The team has improved a lot this year,” McCauley said. “I feel like I am [a] little more stable in what I am doing here, but the team is better than last year and is showing a lot more improvement.”
After the huge win on Saturday against Hilbert College, McCauley said, “[Our] game against Hilbert College was a good win. It was great to get another conference win under our belts. This year has been a good step, and I am excited to see about the years to come for sure and see what else could happen. Now we have plenty of time to rest.”
Senior political science major Matthew Minkin has led the team by recording his sixth double-double of the season on 14 kills and 14 digs. This achievement would guarantee him Saint Vincent College (SVC) Bearcat Athlete of the Week honors for the week of Feb. 5-11.
The Bearcats will play their next match against Mount Aloysius College, who as of Feb. 15 are 0-2 in the AMCC and 2-5 overall.
The SVC Bearcats have 12 games left in the season and are tied for second in the conference. It would be the first time the men’s volleyball team make the playoffs under Coach McCauley. Their next home game is March 25 against Wells College at 1 p.m. in the Carey gymnasium. To learn more about the Bearcats volleyball team, visit the team’s website https://athletics.stvincent.edu/sports/mens-volleyball.