Masuk volleyball team wins first round playoff match

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Owen Smith serves for Masuk in the Panthers' SWC tourney semifinal win over Newtown. He had two blocks in Wednesday's state tournament win over Putnam.

MONROE, CT — Seeded sixth, Masuk High’s boys volleyball team blanked visiting Putnam, the 11th seed, 3-0 (25-12, 25-15, 25-13) in the Class M State Tournament’s first round Wednesday.

With the win, the Panthers earn a trip to third seed New Canaan in the quarterfinals on Friday, at 6 p.m.

The Panthers were led by Nate McCauley’s 16 kills and Ryan Barringer’s seven kills. Masuk racked up a dozen aces, led by three from Ethan Rentz.

Owen Smith had two blocks. Masuk needed to compile just nine digs as a team — Nathan Kurkoski had three of them to go along with his 21 assists. Rentz had two digs.

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