Springfield, Mass. - March 1, 2019 - The Springfield College men's volleyball team grinded out a four-set win against MIT on Wednesday night in Rockwell Cage. After dropping the first set, 30-28, Springfield regrouped with 25-19, 25-17, 25-13 set victories.
Springfield, which has ranked No. 2 in the nation in the most recent AVCA Division III National Coaches Poll, now stands at 17-2 on the year. The loss drops the Engineers to 12-6.
The Pride totaled a season-best 14.0 team blocks on the night as it limited the hosts to a .051 hitting percentage. Kyle Jasuta (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) established a new career-high with nine blocks, including eight block assists, while Eli Gabriel Irizarry Pares (Bayamon, Puerto Rico) totaled six blocks to go along with 34 assists, six digs, and five kills. Brennen Brandow (Manorville, N.Y.) led all players with 17 kills and Eli Irizarry Pares (Bayamon, Puerto Rico) posted a double double with 11 kills and 10 digs.
After Springfield opened up a 19-13 cushion in the opening set following a kill from Eli Irizarry Pares, MIT responded with a 12-6 push to earn match point following a Springfield attack error. The Pride would fight off four set points before MIT eventually earned the 30-28 win in a frame where Brandow totaled nine kills on 15 errorless attempts.
Trailing 11-10 in the second set, Springfield manufactured a 7-3 run that was capped off by an overpass kill from Jasuta to give the Pride an 18-14 edge. Following a sideout kill by the Engineers, Springfield put together a 6-2 burst, getting a kill from Chris Parker (East Northport, N.Y.) to earn set point at 24-18. A service error by MIT would later knot the match at a set apiece as the Pride won the frame, 25-19.
The Pride jumped out to a 5-1 lead in the third on a kill from Mike Neary (Ventura, Calif.), but the hosts would gain a 14-13 edge thanks to a Springfield attack error. Neary would then side out with a kill to kickstart six unanswered points by the Pride, as Parker contributed a solo block and kill for the 19-14 lead. Parker would then turn in on from the service line to help Springfield pull away with the 25-17 win and take a 2-1 lead.
Springfield scored the first seven points of the fourth set, with Jasuta contributing two kills and two blocks to lead the way. The Pride had five blocks in the frame, holding MIT to a -.050 team hitting percentage as it coasted to the 25-14 win and four-set victory.
The Pride will head to New York City on Saturday when it clashes with NYU at the Brooklyn Athletic Facility. Match time is set for 3 pm.
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