August 31, 2021 – By NJP

In a story that is still breaking, Kean University outside hitter Jared Ray has transferred to Rutgers-Newark and will be inserted into an already formidable line-up, making the Scarlet Raiders one of the top teams at the D3 level in the East Region.

According to the Kean University website, Ray has had the following accomplishments in his first two years for the Cougars:

2021: AVCA First Team All-American…AVCA All-East Region…All-CVC First Team…All-NJAC First Team…NJAC Player of the Week (4/5, 3/29, 3/22)…CVC Player of the Week (3/29, 3/22)…Played in 39 sets over 12 matches, making 11 starts…Totaled 213.5 points, 194 kills, 69 digs, 20 blocks…Averaged 5.47 points per set, 4.97 kills per set, 1.77 digs per set, 0.51 blocks per set…Tallied 15 digs against Lancaster Bible on Mar. 17th…Finished with 26 kills and eight digs in the victory over Rutgers-Newark on Mar. 17th.

2020: AVCA All-East Region…NJAC Co-Player of the Year…NJAC Co-Rookie of the Year…All-NJAC First Team…All-CVC First Team…CVC Player of the Week (2/17, 3/2)…NJAC Rookie of the Week (1/27, 2/17, 2/24, 3/2)…Played in 51 sets over 16 matches, making 14 starts…Totaled 254 points, 229 kills, 91 digs, and 25 blocks, and 10 aces…Averaged 4.98 points per set, 4.49 kills per set, 0.20 aces per set, 1.78 digs per set and 0.49 blocks per set…Finished with 25 kills and 10 digs in the victory over Randolph-Macon on Feb. 15th.

Combining Ray with NJAC player of the year, opposite Andrew Zaleck, and CVC All Conference players… outside Arvind Kumar, setter Justin Tuohy, middle Danny Quay, as well as libero Matt Nikishin, gives RN the talent level to be an immediate favorite in the CVC, NJAC, and a contender for the National D3 title.

Both Ray and Zaleck have been dominant these past two seasons and giving playmaking setter Justin Tuohy another formidable attacker in the Scarlet Raiders arsenal will produce an abundance of points.

It’s unclear where the Cougars will settle in this year after losing some great senior contributors to graduation as well as Ray to transfer. Kean had one of the larger rosters and still has many talented players, but they will no doubt have some challenges.

Here is NJP’s Pre-Season New Jersey ranking for the 2022 season:

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