Harvard to open 2022 season with three-match California road trip

Photo courtesy of the Harvard athletics

There is no easing into the regular season for Harvard following a 22-months layoff.

Harvard as part of recently unveiling its 2022 schedule announced it will open the season with a West Coast road trip against UC Irvine, UC San Diego and Long Beach — three Big West teams that were all nationally ranked throughout the 2021 season.

The Crimson return to the court after opting out of last season that took place in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. Harvard was 9-6 in March 2020 when the remainder of that season was canceled because of the pandemic.

Outside attacker Campbell Schoenfeld highlights 2020 starters returning for the Crimson. The Second-Team All-EIVA selection ended the abbreviated 2020 season in the nation’s top 25 with a 3.58 kills per game average, including having a career-high 23 kills against George Mason.


The season opener against UC Irvine on Jan. 12 will be the first all-time meeting between the two schools.

UC Irvine opened last season in the top 10 of the national rankings but finished in last place in the Big West and lost in the conference tournament quarterfinals. Both Big West All-Freshman outside attackers Franccesco Sani and Cole Gillis, though, return to the Anteaters after spending the offseason helping the United States win a bronze medal at the Pan American Cup.

Harvard following its season opener will play UC San Diego on Jan. 14 and Long Beach State on Jan. 15.

Long Beach State ended last season at No. 8 in the nation coaches poll and national media poll and return a majority of starters. Outside attacker Spencer Olivier was in the nation’s top 10 with a 4.02 kills per game average and had a combined 36 kills along with more than a .400 attack percentage in the team’s postseason run to the Big West Tournament semifinals.

UC San Diego finished the 2021 season at No. 11 in the national coaches poll and upset the eventual NCAA champions Hawai’i in the Big West Tournament semifinals. The Tritons also return multiple starters, including All-Big West outside attacker Kyle McCauley who was in the nation’s top 25 averaging 3.63 kills per game.

The Crimson are a combined 0-5 all-time against the Tritons and the Beach with losses to both teams coming most recently in 2019.

2022 Harvard regular season schedule

Jan. 12 at UC Irvine
Jan. 14 at UC San Diego
Jan. 15 at Long Beach State
Jan. 21 vs. Queens
Jan. 22 vs. King
Jan. 29 vs. Sacred Heart
Feb. 4 vs. Purdue Fort Wayne
Feb. 11 vs. Penn State
Feb. 12 vs. Saint Francis
Feb. 18 vs. St. Francis Brooklyn
Feb. 19 vs. NJIT
March 4 vs. Princeton
March 5 vs. Princeton
March 12 at Grand Canyon
March 13 at Grand Canyon
March 18 at Sacred Heart
March 25 at Penn State
April 1 at St. Francis Brooklyn
April 2 at NJIT
April 8 vs. Charleston
April 9 vs. Charleston
April 15 at George Mason
April 16 at George Mason