Volleyball Loses in NECVA Quarters, Collects Slew of End-of-Season Awards

The nationally-ranked No. 11 MIT men’s volleyball team finished its incredible season in the quarter-final round of the North East Collegiate Volleyball Association (NECVA) Championship Tournament this past weekend. The Engineers (27-6), seeded No. 5, outlasted No. 12 Endicott College (28-30, 30-19, 30-18, 21-30, 15-9) in the opening round, but then fell to No. 4 seed and nationally-ranked No. 7 D’Youville College (30-22, 30-20, 30-27).

MIT collected a slew of conference and division honors throughout the weekend. In the New England Division, Praveen Pamidimukkala ’09 was named the Player of the Year and was also selected to the All-New England Division First Team. Philip M. Rogoz ’10 joined Pamidimukkala on the first team while Ryan G. Dean ’08 and T. Scott Pollom ’09 were tabbed for the Second Team.

Head Coach Paul Dill received his first NECVA honor as he was named the New England Division Coach of the Year. Following their outstanding performances at the championship tournament, Pamidimukkala and Rogoz earned All-Tournament Team accolades.

The Engineers’ plaudits continued on the academic side as they were recipients of the NECVA Academic Team Award and had nine representatives on the All-Academic Team. Dean, Volkan Gurel ’09, Eugene Jang ’09, Randolph H. Li ’08, Pamidimukkala, Pollom, Matthew Ng ’08, Rogoz, and Steven D. Ray ’08 made the list for MIT.

Pamidimukkala posted 38 kills, tying the Institute record for kills in the Engineers’ third victory over the Endicott Gulls this season. In addition to his .420 hitting percentage, he contributed 13 digs and three blocks. Pollom registered 13 kills and three blocks while Michael Demyttenaere ’10 tallied eight kills and five blocks in the front row. On the defensive end, Dean amassed 12 digs and three blocks as Ng collected 11 digs. Rogoz finished with 61 assists and a team-high 16 digs.

In the Engineers’ quarterfinal match-up with D’Youville, Pamidimukkala led the way with 20 kills to go along with 10 digs. Dean produced 13 digs as Pollom bolstered MIT’s offense with 10 kills. Ng added eight digs while Demyttenaere paced Tech with three blocks. Rogoz rounded out the offense with 45 assists.

The Engineers finished the season with 27 wins, better than last year’s 23. Last year MIT beat SUNY New Paltz in the quarter-finals to advance one round further than in this season. With a core of Pamidimukkala, Rogoz, Dean, and Pollom returning next season, expectations are high for 2008.