NASHUA, NH – Ryan Guyton (Lockport, NY/Lockport) recorded a game-high 11 kills for Sage, but it wouldn't be enough as the Gators fell to MIT 3-0 (25-18, 25-18, 25-13) on the first day of the Live Free or Die Tournament.
The Gators started down the first set 12-7, but Sage (3-6) went on a 5-1 run to bring the score to 13-12. After the Engineers responded with a run of their own, a kill from Guyton brought the Gators back within four points (17-13). MIT (9-3) responded with a 4-0 run off kills by Matt Reilly and Andrew Hall to bring the score to 22-15. Sage broke the run off a kill from Chris MacArthur (Hillsdale, NY/Taconic Hills), but the Engineers finished the set at 25-18 off a service ace from Skyler Kaufman.
In the second set, MIT got off to an early 10-2 lead until kills from Guyton and Bailey Cecchi (Agawam, MA/Agawam) led the Gators on a 6-3 run to bring the Sage back within four points. After 10 services, MIT was up 23-13, but the Gators did not back down. They went on a 5-2 run, but MIT's Sean Kropp ended the 25-18 set on a Yize Dong assist.
MIT started off set no. three up 5-1, until Guyton broke the run with a kill off a Casey Fitzpatrick (Haverhill, MA/Haverhill) assist. With Sage down 5-11, Fitzpatrick responded with a kill of his own to bring the Gators back within five points. However, the Engineers proved to be too much and won the final set 25-13.
Guyton led the way on offense for Sage with 13 points, 11 kills and two service aces. The sophomore was followed by Cecchi with 8.0 points, six kills and two service aces. Fitzpatrick led the way in assists with 19, and Austin Laverty (Schenectady, NY/Mohonasen) totaled nine digs.
MIT was led offensively by Kaufman with a game-high 15.0 points, including six service aces. Dong tallied 31 assists for the Engineers with Brendan Chang leading the way with 12 digs on defense.
The Gators finish up the Live Free or Die Tournament tomorrow Sun., Feb. 7 with matches against Rivier and Daniel Webster at 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. respectively.