Kingsmen Start East Coast Trip with Sweep of MIT

Kingsmen Start East Coast Trip with Sweep of MIT

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.— The Cal Lutheran men's volleyball team started out its east coast trip with a 3-0 sweep of MIT on Monday in the Rockwell Cage arena. The Kingsmen won the sets 25-21, 25-18, 25-23.

Cal Lutheran is on the east coast for a five-game stretch and will work themselves down the coast. The Kingsmen began in Massachusetts and will end in Virginia. CLU earned its eighth sweep as they improved to 10-8 on the season. The loss drops the MIT Engineers to 16-7. 

CLU showed a balanced attack as four Kingsmen recorded at least eight kills. Andrew Reina and Patrick Rowe led the team with nine apiece while Justin Dietrich and Mason Mercer both added eight. 

The offense outhit MIT in every set as Grant Nelson and Alec Bennett dished out 19 and nine assists, respectively. CLU slugged .143 in the first, .258 in the second and .194 in the third while MIT hit .062, .091 and .108. 

The defense also stood out, led by Dietrich with eight total blocks. Dasmen Stewart, Mercer and Rowe were next with four each. Two of Rowe's blocks were solo. 

Reina was one kill short of a double-double as he put up 10 digs. Nelson was second with seven digs and Bennett and Rowe both tallied six each. 

The first set was tied at four before MIT doubled up the Kingsmen, prompting CLU to take a timeout. The timeout was what the Kingsmen needed as they came out of the break with a 13-5 run and took a 17-13 lead. Dietrich and Stewart both recorded two kills each and Mercer and Rowe both added one. The Engineers could not cut into the lead after that as CLU claimed the first set 25-21.  

Cal Lutheran used another big run in the second set as they created the breathing room. With the score tied at 7, the Kingsmen went on a 12-6 run, to make it 20-13. They scored the final three points of the run and forced MIT to call a timeout. The points came via a kill by Rowe, a block assist from Stewart and Dietrich and a service ace from Brendan Ward. CLU held off MIT the rest of the way to win the second set 25-19 and had a 2-0 match lead. The Kingsmen carried that momentum into the third set as they looked for the sweep. CLU did just that as they won the third set 25-23 and the match 3-0.

Cal Lutheran continues its east coast trip on Tuesday as the Kingsmen play at Wentwroth at 4 p.m. Pacific Standard Time.

Box Score: CLU 3, MIT 0
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Release by Ryan Jorgenson, Sports Information Director