Jan. 14, 2009
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - A match-high 24 kills from freshman opposite hitter Carson Clark and torrid team hitting led the No. 5 UC Irvine men's volleyball team to a 3-1 victory over No. 9 UC Santa Barbara in both squads' opening Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) match Wednesday at Robertson Gymnasium. Scores went 30-23, 30-25, 26-30, and 30-17 in favor of the Anteaters.
Clark, who was hitting close to .800 at one point in the second set, ended at .625 with 24 kills and four errors in 32 swings. The Santa Barbara native also added a service ace, seven digs, and two blocks while totaling a match-best 26.0 points.
UC Irvine (4-1, 1-0 MPSF) opened solidly by posting a .667 (15-1-21) attack percentage in the first set. Santa Barbara kept the Anteaters to a .200 clip (15-8-35) in set three, but Irvine returned in set four to hit .409 (12-3-22) to UCSB's -.118 (8-12-34). The Gauchos finished at .205 (56-29-132) for the night.
For the fourth time in four matches, UCSB (2-2, 0-1 MPSF) was led by sophomore outside hitter Jeff Menzel, who recorded 21 kills in 46 swings. Opposite Jake Rosener followed with 14 and middle blocker Scott Slaughter chipped in with 13. Middle Sam Moisenco had five blocks and libero Andy McGuire had seven digs. Aside from poor hitting, the Gauchos were also hurt by 22 errors from the service line.
Jordan DuFault had 11 kills for the Anteaters, while Bryan Simmons hit .700 with eight kills and just one error in 10 sets. Brent Asuka and Taylor Wilson each recorded a match-high eight digs. Irvine out-blocked UCSB 14-5.
It was the eighth consecutive victory for UC Irvine over UCSB dating back to the 2006 season.
UCSB continues MPSF play at No. 8 UCLA on Friday, Jan. 16. The match is slated for 7 p.m. at Pauley Pavilion.
**UCSB - a nationally recognized university in both academic and athletic excellence - is located on the central coast of California in a picturesque campus and community setting on the Pacific Ocean. Each year over 450 Division 1 Gaucho student-athletes compete for national championships, succeed in the classroom, and give back to the community.**
- UCSBgauchos.com -