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Men’s Volleyball Loses to Harvard In Season Finale

By Shao-Fei Moy

In their final game of the season, the men’s volleyball team lost to Harvard University Wednesday night at the Malkin Athletic Center. After dropping the first two games, the Engineers came back to take the third. However, they were outplayed by Harvard in the fourth game and lost the match 3-1 (4-15, 5-15, 15-13, 9-15).

The first game started out with both teams playing solidly, forcing a number of sideouts. But then bad passing caused the Engineers’ offense to break down. A number of hitting errors ensued and the Crimsons jumped out to an early 10-3 lead. Despite several great digs by setter Minpont Chien ’00, Harvard was able to win the first game easily 15-4.

Harvard continued its fine play and took control of the second game early. Again, MIT was plagued by bad passing which resulted in some tough sets and weak attacks. The Crimsons took advantage and jumped to another huge lead and never looked back. Harvard took the second game 15-5.

In the third game, the Engineers, desperate to put up a challenge, shuffled up the line-up and substituted Dan Levy ’02 at setter. After falling behind 1-5, MIT called a time out and regained their composure. The Engineers got a sideout following the time out and began their valiant comeback with Chien as setter again. Darius Jazayeri ’00 served seven straight points, including three aces to put MIT up 8-5. Outside hitters Bob Moser ’99 and Nikolaos Michalakis ’01 led the attack with seven and four kills, respectively, in the third game.

Harvard regrouped and scored several points of their own off some tremendous hitting by their middle blockers to pull back ahead 9-11. Both teams battled back and fourth for the lead and exchanged several sideouts with the score tied at 13-13. MIT was finally able to break the tie by forcing the Crimsons to make a couple of hitting errors and won the game 15-13.

In the fourth game the Engineers came out and took an early 7-4 on several hitting mistakes by Harvard. The Crimsons came back after a timeout and cut into the MIT lead to tie the game at 9-9. From that point on, MIT was not able to capitalize on any offensive opportunities and failed to score for the rest of the game, losing 9-15. Despite the lost, Moser tallied 20 kills while Chien put up 28 assists for the match.

With this match, the men’s volleyball team concludes a successful season, highlighted by a win against Harvard at the beginning of the season. They finished with a 7-12 record.