Harvard Men's Volleyball Looks to Keep Winning Against EIVA Rivals George Mason and Princeton
Sophomore Michael Owen has contributed to Harvard's 5-0 start and looks to keep things rolling against EIVA opponents Geroge Mason and Princeton this weekend. (Gil Talbot)
The Harvard men's volleyball team continues its seven-game homestand, hosting George Mason at the Malkin Athletic Center on Friday night. The match is slated for 7 p.m.
Harvard's 5-0 record to begin the season is the best start its had since 1993 when the Crimson went 12-0 to start its season.
Junior Matt Jones and sophomore Nick Madden have sparked the Crimson offense leading the team in kills with 82 and 61, respectively.
The Crimson has aslo been buoyed by a pair of freshmen who have produced early for Harvard. DJ White is third on the team in kills with 45 while Caleb Zimmick is fourth with 34 and leads the team in blocks with 23.
Scouting the Patriots
George Mason enters the contest with a 3-5 record having lost its last three matches. The Patriots have fallen to Loyola-Chicago, Lewis and most recently Juniata.
Scouting the Tigers
The Tigers will take on the Crimson in the second match of a two-match weekend for Harvard. Before Friday night's contest against Sacred Heart, Princeton has gone 1-2 on its opening road trip in California. The Tigers dropped their first two matches against Cal-Baptist, and Cal-State Long Beach (3-1, 3-0) but rallied in its third matchup with UC San Diego coming back and winning 3-2. Cody Kessel paces the tigers in kills with 43 while Kessel and Will Siorky are tied for the team lead in blocks with 12 apiece. The team as a whole is struggling offensively; through three games they haven't reached the .300 plateau as far as hitting percentage, managing only .230. The Tigers lead the all-time series with Harvard 31-11 but the Crimson has won the last two meetings with the Tigers, both by 3-2 scores.
Harvard is currently riding its best winning streak to start a season since 1993 where it opened the year a perfect 12-0. This is also the first time since 2009 that the team has put together a 5-game winning streak.
Can't Keep up With The Jones
Senior Matt Jones has been prolific through his career with Harvard and it looks like he's trying to make his final year at Harvard his best yet. The La Jolla, Calif. native paces the Crimson in kills with 82, and kills per set, 4.56. Jones is also at the top of the leaderboard of three EIVA categoreis leading in kills, hitting percentage (.433) and services aces per set (0.67).
Look no further than Junior Rob Lothman to lend a helping hand. Lothman leads the team in assists with 151 through the team's first five games.
New Kid On The Block
Its not hard to spot number 10 on the court for the Crimson and its been even more difficult to avoid him for the opposing team. Zimmick has recoreded 23 total blocks and leads the EIVA in blocks per set with a 1.28 average.
Harvard will host the second of two EIVA matches taking on Princeton on Saturday starting at 1 p.m.