March 29, 2009

Men's Volleyball Sets Five Setter to Harvard

March 29, 2009

Final Stats

Fairfield, CT - Senior Brady Weissbourd had a match high 31 kills and 15 digs and Erik Kuld added 13 kills and 15 digs as Harvard rallied from a 2 games to 1 deficit to defeat Sacred Heart, 3-2, in EIVA action Sunday afternoon at the Pitt Center. The Pioneers held a 2-1 lead and had match point in the fourth set before the Crimson stormed back to win in five sets by scores of 30-27, 25-30, 28-30, 32-30, 15-13.

Junior Kalani Efstathiou (Beaverton, OR) led the Pioneers with 24 kills and 13 digs while sophomore Roger Parent (Burlington, CT) added 22 kills and nine digs. Senior Barry Smith (Shelton, CT) had 14 kills and 10 digs while libero Matt Somerville (Orange, CT) rang up 14 digs from his defensive position.

Weissbourd hit a match high .383 for Harvard. Matt Jones added 15 kills and Gil Weintraub added 14 digs.

Sacred Heart jumped out to a 5-2 lead early on but the Crimson erased the lead and went up by two at 8-6 on back-to-back kills by Kuld, forcing a Pioneer timeout. Sacred Heart grabbed the lead back at 12-11 on an Efstathiou kill and later extended it to four at 20-16. The Crimson would not go down quietly, scoring six straight points to turn a 22-19 deficit into a 25-22 lead, Three kills by Jones within a five-serve span pushed it to 29-25, and Weintraub blocked a Sacred Heart attack for the 30-27 win.

The Crimson took an early 4-1 lead in the second set, but Sacred Heart tied the score twice and then ran off six straight points to go up, 12-7. Harvard cut the lead to one, 15-14, but the Pioneers extended the lead to four at 18-14 and then five at 22-17. An attack error by Smith cut the Pioneer lead to two at 23-21, but Sacred Heart would go on to win, 30-25.

Harvard took an early 11-10 lead in the third set. Harvard went up 14-12 with a kill of his own, but the Pioneers twice took a one-point lead until they called a timeout down, 25-23. After Weissbourd gave Harvard a 27-25 lead, Sacred Heart posted four straight points, including a pair of service aces by Parent, before Smith's kill sealed the 30-28 win.

Trying to close out the match. SHU took an early 4-1 lead in the fourth set, before Harvard took the next five points to go up, 6-4. A solo block by Weintraub got the lead to six at 12-6, forcing Sacred Heart to call its second timeout of the set. The Pioneers responded, taking nine of the next 11 points for a 16-15 advantage. Sophomore Will Kelleher (Providence, RI) blocked two straight Crimson attacks and later posted a service ace as Sacred Heart went up by three at 21-18. Harvard chipped away at the lead, eventually getting even at 24 on a kill by Kuld. The Pioneers had match point at 30-29 but Kelleher shanked the serve to tie it up at 30-all. An attack error by Smith and a kill by Kuld then gave Harvard the 32-30 win.

The teams traded the first 11 points of the fifth set before junior Soren Rosier's solo block put Harvard up two at 7-5. A Sacred Heart block following a Crimson service error tied it at 11-11, but the Pioneers had to call a timeout after back-to-back kills by Weissbourd and Weintraub gave the Crimson the two-point lead back at 13-11. Efstathiou knocked home a kill to make it 14-13 Harvard, but Weissbourd finished with his 31st kill of the match for the 15-13 fifth-set win.

The Pioneers are back in action Friday night when they take on Rutgers-Newark in EIVA play. The match is set for a 7:30 pm start.