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Scarlet Hawks Fall to Elms and MIT

Photo by Judith Rackow
Photo by Judith Rackow

CAMBRIDGE, MASS.—The Illinois Institute of Technology men's volleyball team embarked on their first doubleheader of 2020 as they squared-off against Elms College in a neutral-site bout, and host MIT on Saturday afternoon. The Scarlet Hawks dropped their second and third-straight games when they lost a 3-1 decision to Elms, followed by a 3-0 heartbreaker to MIT.

The losses drop IIT to 1-6, 0-0 NACC this season.

Elms 3, Scarlet Hawks 1 (25-16, 25-18, 14-25, 25-13)

IIT found themselves in a 2-0 hole before they erupted for 17 kills in the third set, where they registered a 25-14 victory. The Scarlet Hawks led from start-to-finish in set three, where Michal Markevych led the way with six kills in the frame. A combined 12 errors was IIT's achilles heel in their 25-13 loss in set four. 

Markevych finished the match with nine kills, while Easton Kays followed with eight. Derek Bostick paced the defense with 10 digs while Jannik Birkholz posted 28 assists. Evan Robeck, Michael Sherwood and Birkholz each had a hand in two assisted blocks. 

Birkholz's counterpart Carlos Mercado registered 28 assists for Elms. Jeremy Torres paced Elms with 14 kills, while Luis Martinez followed with 10. 

The Scarlet Hawks were held to .097 hitting while Elms tallied a .214 figure. 

MIT 3, Scarlet Hawks 0 (25-21, 25-17, 25-20)

Both teams hit the ball on the screws as the Scarlet Hawks posted a season-high .282 compared to MIT's .351. 

IIT was able to hold leads of 6-5 and 7-6 in set one, but couldn't maintain ground in a 25-21 loss. The Scarlet Hawks led for a majority of the opening stages of set two, with the latest occurrence at 11-10. It was the arsenal Jacob Gasparich needed as he responded with four kills for MIT to close the frame, which helped them secure the 25-17 win. MIT led from start-to-finish in set three en route to a 25-20 score.

Andriy Bench paced IIT with 11 kills and four blocks, while Jannik Birkholz fed him with 26 assists. Derek Bostick commanded the defense with nine digs. 

MIT got kills from eight different players, led by Jack Yurkanin and Jacob Gasparich's eight a piece.

The Scarlet Hawks will close their east coast swing on Sunday, February 9 at Wentworth. Game time is set for 11:00 a.m. (CT).