Men's Sports Sports

Springfield men’s volleyball advances in Morgan Classic in sweep over MIT

By Chris Gionta

Prior to the Springfield men’s volleyball team’s sweep over Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the Pride’s partnership with Team IMPACT was recognized. In March, Springfield announced 15-year-old Conlan Shaw as a member of the Pride, and the bond between Shaw and the team has grown ever since.

“It’s been a special relationship for our team and our program,” said Springfield head coach Charlie Sullivan. “Sometimes, I don’t know who’s getting more out of it ﹣ our players or Conlan. We look at both these parties and what they’re sharing with each other, and giving each other support.”

Team IMPACT shirts were also spotted in the Blake Arena crowd to help spread awareness about the cause.

In the match, the Pride were in control from the very start. MIT began with the serve, and Evan Costley provided a kill to put the Pride up 1-0. Following that was a Jarrett Anderson ace before another Costley kill. Next, Anderson landed an additional ace to make it 4-0.

Springfield kept the dominant pace for the remainder of the first set en route to a 25-12 victory in the frame. Anderson, Costley, and Noah Weislo each had a trio of kills in the set.

Despite their slow first set, the Engineers started the second set effectively. After the Pride went up 2-1, MIT scored four points in a row, which forced a Springfield timeout.

“They just had some really good rallies in game two, so we tried to regroup and kind of get refocused and gain our momentum back,” Sullivan said.

The Pride responded to the timeout with three consecutive points on kills from Anderson and Weislo along with an MIT attack error to make it 5-5. The set remained back-and-forth, with the score being tied at 12 about halfway through.

However, from there on, Springfield went on a 13-2 run that won them the set 25-14. The run was powered by three kills from Anderson, two from Noah Weislo, and two service aces from Ethan Weislo.

The Pride continued their control through the third set, where they won 25-15. Anderson played a large factor in the final pair of frames ﹣ combining for 11 kills after the first. Overall, he was amazingly efficient with a .591 hitting percentage on 22 attacks.

“It’s intimidating having Jarrett [Anderson] hit the ball at you,” Sullivan said. “I imagine it’s kind of a spike in our momentum when he does really well.”

The Pride’s win pushed them to the championship game of the International Volleyball Hall of Fame Morgan Classic, which this year, is a four-team tournament between Springfield, MIT, New York University, and Rutgers-Newark.

That game will be played at 8 p.m. on Feb. 11 at Blake Arena.

Photo: Springfield College Athletics

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