Clemens led the Crimson in kills for the fifth-straight contest (Gil Talbot).
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Looking for its third-straight conference victory, Harvard men's volleyball could not overcome an early deficit, falling to NJIT, 3-1. The loss came by set scores of 19-25, 30-32, 25-21, and 25-17.
Branden Clemens led the Harvard (11-9, 5-3 EIVA) attack for the fifth-straight match, ending the clash with 17 kills and .519 hitting percentage. DJ White added a double-double with 15 kills and 10 digs, and Brad Gretsch tallied 11 kills.
Defensively, Casey White posted his fifth-consecutive match with double-digit kills, ending with 10, but NJIT (9-10, 2-7 EIVA) hit for an efficient .390 to earn the victory. Jabarry Goodridge paced the Highlanders with 25 kills, while TJ Jurko contributed 19.
NJIT controlled the first set, using a string of five consecutive points to gain a 1-0 advantage. Back to back kills from Gretsch and Clemens threatened to cut into the Highlanders' lead, but the deficit was too large to overcome.
The second frame was Harvard's longest of the year, ending 32-30 in favor of NJIT. Harvard had four chances to win the set, but each time NJIT rallied to knot the score. NJIT's Ryan Thomas scored an ace down the left side to push the lead to 2-0.
NJIT came out strong in the first set, with Jurko notching a pair of aces to build an early three-point lead. Down 15-11, Harvard rattled off four consecutive points to tie the score at 15-15, led by points from Clemens, Gretsch, and Caleb Zimmick. The Crimson recorded six of the final eight points to force a fourth game.
Harvard was unable to secure a lead in the fourth stanza, coming as close as 11-11 after a kill and block from DJ White and block from Zimmick. The Highlanders closed the match after winning six of the final seven points.
Harvard travels for its final regular season road trip to Penn State and Saint Francis April 10-11.