Men's Volleyball Blanks Elms, 3-0, on Senior Night

Seniors Brendan Chang and Oren Katzen
Seniors Brendan Chang and Oren Katzen

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – In the second meeting between both teams this season, MIT once again came away with a three-set victory as it defeated Elms College, 25-16, 25-13, 25-18, in a non-conference men's volleyball match on Tuesday night. Junior Martin Krasuski (Aurora, Ill.) led all players with seven kills as the Engineers improved to 19-6 on the year. Sophomore Gabriel Reis Levy (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) paced the Blazers (10-10) with six kills in addition to recording three digs and two blocks.

MIT scored the first six points of the match en route to an 11-4 lead. A Reis Levy kill along with back-to-back aces by senior Angel Castro (Carolina, Puerto Rico) helped Elms narrow the gap; however, an exchange of points followed. The Blazers stayed within striking distance as a block by junior Austin DeCosmo (Southwick, Mass.) and sophomore Daniel Bondarovsky (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) brought them within 16-12. The Engineers replied with a kill from sophomore Tavish Smith (Laguna Beach, Calif.) that sparked a 10-4 run to end the set.

The early stages of the second stanza were closely played as it featured seven ties and four lead changes. Deadlocked at 11, a serving miscue by the visitors along with an ace from sophomore Tom Leech (Meadville, Pa.) gave MIT a slight edge. A serving error cut the lead in half but the hosts countered with a 12-1 run to capture the set. Freshman Skyler Kaufman's (Needham, Mass.) kill kicked off a string of seven consecutive points, which also included all three of his aces.

Elms inched out to a 5-2 lead in the third set following a block by Castro and junior Dervin Dimanche (Queens, N.Y.). The Blazers maintained the small cushion until a kill from junior Sean Kropp (Fairless Hills, Pa.) evened the score at 11. A hitting error put MIT ahead but an exchange of sideouts would result in four more ties. Kills by freshman Aaron Huang (San Jose, Calif.) and sophomore Andrew Hall (Lynnfield, Mass.) coupled with a hitting miscue gave the Engineers their largest lead of the frame at 18-15.

The back-and-forth scoring resumed as a Castro kill brought Elms within two (20-18). The comeback bid was thwarted as the Cardinal and Gray registered the final five points of the night, capped by a kill from freshman Jacob Gasparich (New Lenox, Ill.).

Kropp posted six kills and two blocks as Smith connected on five of his six errorless attempts for a .833 hitting performance. Huang generated all four of his kills in the third set while Kaufman finished with four kills and three aces. Senior Brendan Chang (Laytonsville, Md.) collected five digs as freshman Yize Dong (Moraga, Calif.) produced 28 assists and five digs.

Junior Qua'Sean Crowe (Stamford, Conn.) tallied five kills and three blocks while Castro chipped in three aces and two blocks. Bondarovsky notched five digs and three blocks as freshman John Dunphy (Farmington, Conn.) totaled 19 assists and four digs.

Following next week's spring break, MIT returns to action on Thursday, March 31 with a trip to Endicott College. Elms, meanwhile, has a quick turnaround as it will host NECC rival Regis College on Thursday, March 17.