CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Junior Tavish Smith (Laguna Beach, Calif.) had 21 kills to help pace the MIT men's volleyball team to a 3-2 win over fifth-ranked Wentworth Institute of Technology in a non-conference match played at duPont Gymnasium.
With the win the Engineers improve to 6-3 while the Leopards suffer their first loss of the season, falling to 5-1.
In a first set which saw 16 ties and seven lead changes, Wentworth staved off set point at 24-23 when seniors Jake Reed (Arvada, Colo.) and Mike Hansen (Rochester, N.Y.) combined for a block. An attack error gave the Black & Gold the serve for set point, however a kill from Smith knotted the set at 25-all. Reed gave Wentworth a 26-25 lead and an attack error lifted the Leopards to a 27-25 win. Junior Sean Mullen (Longwood, Fla.) had five kills in the set while junior Ollie Oshman (Pennington, N.J.) had four blocks.
The Engineers tied the match at a set apiece with a 26-24 win in the frame. The back and forth frame featured 11 tied and six lead changes and neither team led by more than three points in the set, including when Wentworth took a 20-17 lead on a block from Mullen, Hansen, and senior Alex Potts (Niverville, N.Y.) and again at 21-18 after a kill from Mullen. MIT came back to tie the set at 23-all on a kill from Smith. Reed gave Wentworth a 24-23 lead however, the Engineers scored three straight points to take the set. Reed had six kills in the set while Mullen had four blocks.
MIT took a 2-1 lead with a 25-17, wire-to-wire lead in the third set, a set which saw the Black & Gold hit -.125. The Engineers jumped out to a 7-2 lead before Wentworth closed the gap to 12-10 after an attack error and again at 16-14 after a kill from Oshman. However, MIT scored five of the next six points to take a 21-15 lead and extended its lead to close the set. Oshman had two blocks in the set.
Wentworth extended the match to a fifth set with a 25-20 win in the fourth set after hitting .500 (11-2-18) and holding MIT to .077. The Leopards took the lead for good after an attack error made it 13-12 and brought its lead to 21-16 when Potts and Oshman combined for a block. Four straight points pulled the hosts to within a points but a Potts kill began a 4-0 set-ending run, which included back-to-back aces from junior Jon Roat (Macedon, N.Y.).
The fifth set was all MIT as the Engineers hit .727 (8-0-11) and forced Wentworth to hit -.048. The hosts scored the first four points of the set and never looked back, taking a 15-6 win.
Reed finished with 14 kills and three blocks while Mullen added 11 kills and seven blocks. Oshman had seven kills and 10 blocks, Potts had eight kills and six blocks, Hansen had six blocks, Roat served three aces, freshman Augusto Rodriguez-Guerrios (Guaynabo, P.R.) had 27 assists, and junior Collin Ritter (Feeding Hills, Mass.) had 17 assists.
Wentworth hosts a tri-match on Saturday as No. 3 Stevens and Endicott come to Tansey Gymnasium for the home opener.
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