January 17, 2008

No. 8 MIT Sweeps Mount Ida in Season Opener

Jan. 17, 2008

Box Score

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - Nationally-ranked No. 8 MIT kicked off its 2008 campaign by defeating Mount Ida College, 30-14, 30-12, 30-19, in a North East Collegiate Volleyball Association (NECVA) New England Division men's volleyball match on Thursday night. The victory marked the third year in a row that the Engineers began their season with a win over the visiting Mustangs.

In the opening game, MIT established a 6-3 lead, but Mount Ida tallied the next three points to even the match. After exchanging points on the next two serves, the Engineers went on a 22-6 run which eventually set up game point. A strike by Tim Hughes extended the frame for the Mustangs, however MIT sealed the game on the next serve.

After winning the first point of the second stanza, strong serving by Eugene Jang resulted in nine unanswered points by the Engineers. Following its own timeout, Mount Ida got on the scoreboard and chipped away at the deficit to come within eight (15-7). MIT responded by scoring 15 of the final 20 points with Troy Tamas notching the game-winner.

Both sides exchanged points to start the final frame until the Mustangs posted three in a row for a 4-2 advantage. Each squad picked up a point before the Engineers tallied four straight to reclaim the lead. Mount Ida stayed within striking distance as a service error brought it within one (11-10). MIT countered with an 18-8 run that was capped by a kill from Scott Pollom. Once again, a Hughes hit kept the Mustangs alive but a block by Praveen Pamidimukkala and Steve Ray clinched the match for the Engineers.

Pamidimukkala turned in a solid performance as he finished with 14 digs, 12 kills, a .409 hitting percentage, four blocks, and three aces. In two games of action, Pollom notched 13 kills on 16-errorless swings for a .813 hitting percentage in addition to a match-high six blocks. Jang and Ryan Dean each contributed eight digs while Eric Reuland led the way with four aces. Philip Rogoz and Tim Lee shared setting duties with Rogoz distributing 31 assists through two games while Lee dished out six.

Hughes paced Mount Ida with nine kills, nine digs, one ace, and one block as Bryan McMenamin totaled 14 assists, six digs, and two kills.

Both squads will continue play on Saturday, Jan. 19. MIT will host top-ranked Springfield College while Mount Ida will square off with Lesley University and Lancaster Bible College.