CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The nationally-ranked
No. 13 MIT men’s volleyball team extended its winning streak
to four following a 30-12, 30-23, 30-8 victory over Lesley
University in a North East Collegiate Volleyball Association
(NECVA) New England Division match on Monday. The Engineers now
stand at 11-4 overall and 6-2 in conference play while the Lynx saw
their ledger dip to 2-8 on the year and 2-5 in NECVA action.
MIT established an 8-3 lead in the opening set, but miscues helped Lesley narrow the margin to three (9-6). The Engineers responded with a 17-3 run to gain control of the frame. The Lynx continued to attack as a kill from Scott Wheeler, a hitting error, and a block by Zachary Almeida-Beers made the score, 26-12, in favor of the hosts. A strike by Garrett Winter, back-to-back aces from Daniel Sngiem, and block by Benson George, Tim Lee, and Matt Hohenberger wrapped up the game for the Cardinal and Gray.
The second stanza was closely played as it featured nine ties and three lead changes. Lesley maintained a two-point cushion during the early stages of the set as a kill from Christian Domingo coupled with a hitting error put the visitors up, 8-6. MIT posted four out of the next five points, going ahead on a block by Patrick Vatterott and Winther. The Engineers gradually generated a 7-3 spurt which extended its lead to four (18-14). The Lynx used a Wheeler hit and capitalized on several MIT miscues to pull in front, 19-18. The Engineers responded with an 11-3 run which resulted in set point. A kill by Almeida-Beers extended the frame, but a service error thwarted any hopes of maintaining a late rally.
MIT held a 4-2 edge until a string of 13 consecutive points which featured seven aces by Alex Becherer broke open the final frame. Nick Assad ended the run with a hit off the Engineers’ block as Hohenberger followed with a kill of his own. Domingo picked up another point for Lesley, but MIT replied with a 12-4 run to close out the match.
Mike Demyttenaere posted 10 kills and two blocks while David Thomas notched nine kills for the Engineers. Winther tallied seven kills, five digs, and two blocks as Hohenberger compiled four kills, three blocks, and three aces. Vatterott totaled four kills and three blocks while Becherer finished with eight aces, four kills, and four digs. Eric Reuland collected nine digs as Jeremy Velazquez added five of his own. Lee racked up 22 assists, three aces, and two blocks while Caine Jette distributed 12 assists in the second set. George registered a pair of blocks as Sngiem earned two aces.
Wheeler paced the Lynx with eight kills while Stephen Siragusa dished out 17 assists. Domingo, Almeida-Beers, and Mike Jack each recorded three digs as Almeida-Beers and Jack both contributed three blocks.
Both squads continue action at home on Wednesday, Feb. 17. MIT will take on cross-town rival Harvard University while Lesley will do battle with NECVA New England Division foe Endicott College.