Harvard won its third straight home opener to improve to 17-6 at the MAC since 2011 (Ben Barnhart).
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Harvard men's volleyball team opened its home schedule with a win Tuesday night, taking down Rivier 3-1 at the Malkin Athletic Center. The Crimson knocked off the Raiders by set scores of 25-15, 18-25, 25-18 and 25-16.
Branden Clemens and Nick Madden led the way for the Crimson as each registered 14 kills. Michael Owen chipped in nine kills and Caleb Zimmick added eight. Rob Lothman distributed 46 assists on the night as the team combined to hit .227.
Harvard (5-2, 1-1 EIVA) limited Rivier (2-3) to a .033 hitting percentage and just 28 kills. Chris Gibbons recorded 12 digs to pace the defense as Lothman notched seven.
With the win, Harvard improved to 17-6 at home since the start of 2011 and has now come up victorious in each of its last three home openers.
The Crimson used a 5-1 stretch to take a 10-6 lead in the first set and extended its advantage to 17-9 with a 6-0 run. A bad set by the Raiders gave Harvard a chance at set point, 24-14, and Zimmick put the frame away with a kill, 25-15.
Rivier hit .333 en route to a 25-18 victory in set two but could not maintain its momentum as the Crimson came back for the win in the third by the same score. Harvard jumped out to an early 10-3 lead thanks to a pair of kills from Clemens and a pair of blocks by Zimmick and Clemens. The margin moved to 18-6 after a 6-0 run by the Crimson before Harvard earned set point, 25-18, on an attack error by the Raiders.
Harvard and Rivier battled back and forth early in the fourth frame before the Crimson was able to blow the frame open with a 11-4 run to close the match out. Chambers, Madden and Zimmick each recorded two kills down the stretch including a Chambers kill for match point, 25-16.
Harvard will remain at home this weekend as it hosts Lees-McRae Friday, Feb. 8 at 7 p.m. and MIT Saturday, Feb. 9 at 4 p.m.