Madden's 11 kills helped the Crimson to a 3-0 victory in the regular season finale (Ben Barnhart).
FAIRFIELD, Conn. – The Harvard men's volleyball team capped off its regular season on Saturday with a straight set victory at Sacred Heart, securing the Crimson the third seed in next weekend's EIVA Tournament. The victory came by set scores of 25-19, 25-16 and 25-23.
Harvard (17-7, 10-4 EIVA) was led by Nick Madden who turned in 11 kills, a .550 hitting percentage and seven digs. DJ White chipped in nine kills and five digs with Branden Clemens contributing seven kills while hitting .583. Rob Lothman recorded 29 assists while guiding the Crimson to a .432 hitting percentage, marking the fourth time this season that Harvard has hit above .400 for a match
Sacred Heart (4-19, 2-12 EIVA) was limited to .111 hitting thanks in part to a six-block performance from Caleb Zimmick. Lothman added four blocks. The Pioneers were paced by Brad Borsay who totaled 10 kills.
The Crimson will now face George Mason in a rematch of last year's EIVA semifinals Thursday, April 25 at University Park, Pa. Top-seeded Penn State will face fourth-seeded Princeton in the second semifinal matchup.
Harvard fell behind to open the match, 14-9, but rallied to go on top 23-18 as part of a 7-0 run. The Pioneers committed five errors during the stretch as Zimmick teamed with Clemens and Lothman for a pair of blocks. The junior middle blocker registered back-to-back kills to earn set point, 25-19.
It was all Crimson in the second set at Harvard stormed out to a 14-9 advantage. A pair of kills by Clemens helped the team to the five-point edge, and an ace by Madden made it an eight-point game, 23-15. Zimmick came up with yet another block to give the Crimson a chance at set point, and an error by Sacred Heart on the next play put the frame away, 25-16.
The third set was tight the entire way with the teams finding themselves tied at 18-18. A kill by Michael Owen and a block by Lothamn and Zimmick helped give Harvard a three-point margin, 21-18, but the Pioneers came right back to tie the set at 21-21. Tied at 23-23, Madden notched his final kill of the afternoon and an error by the hosts gave the Crimson match point, 25-23.