March 1, 2017
*CSUN 3, UC San Diego 1 (25-16, 22-25, 25-18, 25-21)
Recap by CSUN
NORTHRIDGE, CA - On the strength of 10 aces and .361 hitting, the 12th-ranked CSUN Matadors held off the visiting UC San Diego Tritons in four sets Wednesday in an MPSF match at The Matadome.
CSUNimproved to 12-6 overall and inched closer to the .500 mark in conference play at 5-6.
"We passed much better than we've been passing and although we missed a lot of serves I though we played fairly well against a good UC San Diego team," said CSUN head coach Jeff Campbell. "We had some solid offensive performances tonight and defensively CJ (Suarez)played really well so I'm feeling really good about this win tonight."
Junior Arvis Greene had another big offensive night for the Matadors as he connected for a match-high 21 kills on 39 swings to hit .410. Greene also added four digs, two aces and two blocks. Sophomore DimitarKalchevalso reached double figures in kills with 15 to go with eight digs and a pair of blocks. Kalchev also had three aces giving the NCAA leader 50 this season.
Junior Eric Chance added eight on 12 error-less attacks to hit .667 while also digging a career-high five balls while Josiah Byers had four kills (.200) and a career-high three aces. Redshirt freshman ParkerMaki chipped in six kills and two aces as CSUN had 10 aces as a team.
The Matadors hit .361 behind Sam Porter's 42 assists and CSUN posted a huge advantage in digs (46-29) as Suarez came within one of his career-high with a match-high14.
With Porter serving and CSUN holding an8-6 in the opening set, Maki was instrumental ina 5-0 run as the Matadors opened up a13-6 lead. The outside hitter from Newbury Park had a pair of kills and a block as CSUN took the lead for good. The visiting Tritons got within five but could get no closer as the Matadors closed the set on a Greene kill.
UCSDopened up a 15-11 lead in set two as Tanner Syftestad connected for one of his three aces. The Triton lead swelled to 17-11 before CSUN engineered a 9-3 run to pull even at 20 following a Kalchev kill. Undeterred, UCSDoutscored the Matadors 5-2 down the stretch and blocked a Greene attack on set point to take the 25-22 decision.
After back-to-back aces by Kalchev gave CSUN an early 7-4 lead in the third, UCSD battled back to knot the score at 13-all. A 4-0 Matador run, capped by a Greene ace, put CSUN in front 17-13 and the Matadors eventually made it a 6-1 run to open up a 19-14 lead following another Kalchev ace. CSUN went up two sets to one when Maki's attack went off the Triton block on set point giving the Matadors the 25-18 win.
CSUNbolted out to an early 8-3 lead in the final set but was forced to hang on late. Leading 20-13, the Matadors had to withstand a late UCSD rally that cut the CSUN lead down to three at 22-19. With UCSD still within reach at 24-21, Chance connected on match point.
Syftestad led UC San Diego (5-12, 2-10 MPSF) with 16 kills (.222) while Shayne Beamer added 11 kills on .450 hitting.
CSUNhosts No. 6 UC Irvine Friday night at 7 p.m. to close out its four-match homestand.
*LONG BEACH STATE 3, UC Irvine 1 (25-16, 25-22, 25-27, 25-15)
Recap by LBSU
LONG BEACH - The No. 2 Long Beach State men's volleyball team continued its hot-streak as the Beach collected their ninth straight victory with a 3-1 [25-16, 25-22, 25-27, 25-15] win over No. 6 UC Irvine on Wednesday night inside the Walter Pyramid.
After getting off to a slow offensive start, the Beach (16-2, 12-1 MPSF) used a strong blocking defense to keep the `Eaters (11-6, 8-5 MPSF) off balance. The stout performance at the net fueled Long Beach State's offense as the Beach would heat up in the later sets.
"It was one of those matches, for us, that our blocking defensive effort had to be a little bit better and wait for our offense to get going, but I thought they did a good job, hanging in there and cleaning it up," Long Beach State head coach Alan Knipe said.
The Beach's defensive effort was led by senior middle blocker Bryce Yould who posted six blocks in the contest. LBSU also got a four-block performance from sophomore opposite Kyle Ensing. Yould and Ensing would also lead the team offensively as Yould hit .625 (6-1-8) in the match, while Ensing led all scorers with 14 kills and missed a double-double by two digs as he finished with eight.
While Yould and Ensing controlled the net, senior libero Andrew Sato paced the backrow with 10 digs to mark his program-record 49th double-figure dig performance. Additionally, Sato has accumulated 883 digs in his career as he is just four shy of setting a new all-time digs record at Long Beach State.
In addition to Ensing's double-figure output, the Beach also received double-figure kills from sophomore outside hitter TJ DeFalco who posted 12 kills to go along with four digs and three blocks.
Sophomore setter Josh Tuaniga dished out 42 assists in the match, while also contributing five digs, three kills, two blocks and an ace.
LBSU owned the first set as the defense forced UC Irvine into eight attack errors as the `Eaters suffered a negative attack percentage in the frame (-.042). The Beach hit .208 in the set and after a 1-1 tie, led the rest of the way before capturing a 25-16 win.
The second set saw UC Irvine take a slight lead over Long Beach State and hold that lead for most of the game. However, the Beach stayed within striking distance and wore down the `Eaters tying the game at 19-19 on a kill by Ensing. From there, the two teams battled back and forth until LBSU earned the 25-22 win to complete the come-from-behind victory.
In the third set, the two teams challenged each other through eight ties and UCI turned in its best offensive effort of the night as the Anteaters hit .205 (16-8-39). The 49ers fell behind 23-19 and called for a timeout to regroup. Following the break in action, LBSU managed to come back and even the score at 24-24. The `Eaters took the game to set point three different times before pulling out a 27-25 win to avoid the sweep and force a fourth set.
Having won in straight sets in all but two of their last nine matches, the Beach came out determined in the fourth game and saw their offense awaken. Long Beach State hit a more characteristic .542 (16-3-24) in the frame and jumped out to an early 6-0 lead that it would never relinquish.
"There's no doubt the response (in the fourth set was good)," Knipe said. "It came from the blocking defense side and that was exactly what makes our offense better."
With both the offense and defense on point, the Beach cruised to a 25-15 victory to win in four sets and extend its winning streak to nine.
"I certainly like the things that we're doing," Knipe said of his team. "The most enjoyable part about coaching this team is that they truly want to get better. When we go over film, a lot of our guys will have already watched the video individually and know there are things they need to work on. When you get that culture going in a program, there are a lot of good things that come from that."
Long Beach State looks to continue to gel and make good things happen as it hosts UC San Diego on Friday, March 3 at 7 p.m. inside the Pyramid