MIT coach Nadeem Mazen reports on his team’s season opener against Boston College.
The first two matches went to BC. Our number eight, freshman Connor Kirschbaum, lost to BC’s Max Ortwein in three games; Kirschbaum moved well, but had trouble responding to Ortwein’s front-court control. Number six Ishaan Chugh came out strong against BC’s Joe Pasquale, losing the first two games narrowly. Chugh demonstrated excellent front-court control, but was ultimately outmatched by Pasquale’s retrieval in the final game.
Our number two, Austin Anderson, set the tempo against BC’s senior captain Christian Harrington. Harrington’s superb retrieval ultimately did not stand up to Anderson’s front court kills and tight rails. Anderson won 3-1. MIT senior captain George Pratt likewise set the tempo against Andrew Zarrilli at the number five spot, winning in three close games.
Our number seven, Joey Lemberg, and number four, Robert Habib, each had close games and close matches. Lemberg went up two games against opponent Bill Glennon by outpacing and outshooting him. Glennon came back to win the next two games, but ultimately failed to keep his energy up in the final game, which Lemberg won 11-1. Habib went up two games against opponent Teddy Taylor, winning by only two points each time. Taylor took the third game narrowly and Habib responded winning 11-1 in the fourth game, outlasting Taylor.
Number three Mick Zomnir won in three games against BC’s Daniel Gleeson. Though Gleeson controlled the T much of the time, Zomnir’s superior retrieval and strong back-court play won him three consecutive games. At the number nine spot, freshman Sunny Long beat the Eagles’ Lex Cardone in four games. Long’s stronger shots and untiring retrieval kept him on top, despite ineffective cross-court shots and loose rails.
The real nail-biter of the contest was the number one match. MIT senior captain Andrew Yoon matched up against BC’s Josh Rosenblat. With excellent retrieval and devastating front-court kills, Yoon quickly went up two games. Rosenblat responded with superb retrieval of his own. Ultimately, Yoon’s aggressive shots in games three and four were too risky, giving Rosenblat both games. Rosenblat gained a commanding lead in game five, clinching the match.
MIT and BC both leave the match with strong momentum, and we are looking forward to an informal scrimmage with BC after the winter break.