Jonathan Bates | Associate Editor
The Crimson will open the 2020 season by playing a tournament in Hawai’i on the second weekend of January. They open the tournament with a match versus Grand Canyon on Jan. 9, and then play matches versus Hawai’i and Emmanuel on succeeding days.
Hawai’i (28-2, 8-2 Big West) was the national runner up in 2019, and was ranked No. 1 for a significant portion of the year.
The Bows had four players named to the All-American First-Team — opposite Rado Parapunov, outside attacker Stijn van Tilburg, setter Joe Worsley, and libero Gage Worsley. In addition middle attacker Patrick Gasman was named to the Second Team while Assistant Coach Joshua Walker was named AVCA Assistant Coach of the Year.
Both Joe Worsley and Stijn van Tilburg graduated after the 2019 season, while starting outside attacker Colton Cowell will join Parapunov, Gasman, and Gage Worsley as returning starters.
Hawai’i was No. 1 last year nationally with 13.20 assists per game, 2.62 blocks per game, a .435 attack percentage, and 14.11 kills per game. In addition, the Bows ranked No. 2 with a .217 opponent attack percentage and No. 6 with 1.71 aces per game.
Harvard will make a second trip out west in March when they take on USC, Pepperdine, and Concordia-Irvine on consecutive nights in mid-March.
In addition to playing Hawai’i, Pepperdine (twice), and USC, all of whom made it to the 2019 NCAA tournament, the Crimson will play matches versus 2019 conference champions, Princeton and Barton.
Rounding out the 11-match non-conference slate is a match on the road at Daemen, and matches at home versus St. Francis-Brooklyn and Mount Olive.
Harvard finished the 2019 season with a 6-16 (5-9 EIVA) record, a year after winning the EIVA tournament.
Setter Matthew Ctvrtlik was named to the All-EIVA First-Team last year, while outside attacker Campbell Schoenfeld and middle attacker Trevor Dow both earned honorable mention nods.
The Crimson ranked second in the EIVA in terms of digs per game, led by Jason Shen’s 1.81 digs per game and Ctvrtlik’s 1.74 digs per game.
Harvard will be bolstered by having everyone return from their 2019 team except Dow and middle attacker Kevin Zhao.
2020 Harvard Schedule
Thursday, Jan. 9 vs. Grand Canyon (Neutral site)
Friday, Jan. 10 at Hawai’i
Saturday, Jan. 11 vs. Emmanuel (Neutral site)
Wednesday, Jan. 15 vs. Pepperdine (Neutral site)
Thursday, Jan. 16 at Daemen
Friday, Jan. 31 at Sacred Heart
Sunday, Feb. 3 vs. St. Francis-Brooklyn
Friday, Feb. 7 vs. Barton
Saturday, Feb. 8 vs. Mount Olive
Friday, Feb. 14 at George Mason
Saturday, Feb. 15 at George Mason
Friday, Feb. 21 vs. Saint Francis
Saturday, Feb. 22 vs. Penn State
Friday, Feb. 28 at NJIT
Saturday, Feb. 29 at Princeton
Saturday, March 14 at USC
Sunday, March 15 at Pepperdine
Monday, March 16 at Concordia-Irvine
Saturday, March 28 vs. Sacred Heart
Friday, April 3 vs. Charleston
Saturday, April 4 vs. Charleston
Friday, April 10 at Penn State
Saturday, April 11 at Saint Francis
Friday, April 17 vs. Princeton
Saturday, April 18 vs. NJIT