No. 10 UCSB Readies for Road Trip to No. 2 Stanford, Pacific

Jan. 26, 2010

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• The Schedule
Thursday, January 28, 2010 at 7 p.m. No. 10 UC Santa Barbara (2-5, 2-2) at No. 2 Stanford (3-1, 3-1)
at Burnham Pavilion (1,200)
Series record vs. the Cardinal - 41-26
Streak - Lost 4
2009 Series - Stanford won 2-0
Last time out vs. the Cardinal - L, 3-1 (3/28/09)

Friday, January 29, 2010 at 7 p.m. No. 10 UC Santa Barbara (2-5, 2-2) at Pacific (4-4, 0-4)
at Alex G. Spanos Center (6,150)
Series record vs. the Tigers - 19-10
Streak - Won 8
2009 Series - UCSB won 3-0
Last time out vs. the Tigers - W, 3-0 (3/27/09)

• Tickets For All Matches This Season Are Available
This season, fans have several options to purchase men's volleyball tickets. Online sales are through Ticket Return. Just go to UCSBgauchos.com, roll over "Tickets", and click on "Buy Now Print From Home." Then click on the Men's Volleyball section. Additionally, tickets are available by calling the Ticket Office at 805.893.UCSB or by visiting the Ticket Office, located in the Intercollegiate Athletics building on campus. Of course, you can also buy tickets at the Rob Gym entrance beginning one hour prior to the start of the match. Individual match ticket prices are $7 for adults, $5 for seniors, and $3 for youths. UCSB students are free.

• Can't Make it to the Court?
UCSB men's volleyball matches can be followed live online for no charge with Gametracker. Log on to UCSBgauchos.com, go to the men's volleyball schedule, and click on the Gametracker link for the match you're interested in. You can follow each point and see player statistics and bios.

• On Cloud Nine
Junior outside hitter Jeff Menzel has been rewriting the Gaucho record books this season. After his 25-kill effort against UCLA and his 27-kill performance in UCSB's upset over UC Irvine, Menzel now sits in ninth place all-time in career kills with 1,159. He needs just five more kills to surpass former teammate Theo Brunner (2005-08) to move into eighth place all-time. Menzel has launched 25 or more kills in five of UCSB's seven matches this season and currently leads the MPSF with 5.42 kills per set.

• You'll Never Know if You Don't Try
One of the best leapers in the country, Menzel has been given ample opportunity to be effective for UCSB during his career. Last week Menzel logged 111 attack attempts to give him 2,561 total for his career, the seventh most all-time in program history. Menzel surpassed Jose Gandara (1986-89) and Todd Ahmadi (1989-93) on the all-time list. He needs just 180 more attack attempts to move into sixth place all-time and overtake Olympian Eric Fonoimoana (1988-92), who sits at 2,740 attempts for his career. Menzel's right shoulder has survived through 56.28 attack attempts per match this season.

• Double-Double with No Cheese, Please
Junior outside hitter Cullen Irons secured his second double-double of the season last Friday night at the Bren Events Center, tallying a season-high 22 kills and 10 digs in the Gauchos' upset of UC Irvine. He set a season high in hitting percentage, .375 (22-7-40), while adding a block, an ace, and an assist. Irons' previous double-double occured against Long Beach State on January 13th, where he had 21 kills and 10 digs in a five-set loss to the 49ers. He narrowly missed having double-doubles in matches against UCLA (1/20) and UC San Diego (1/16), only managing nine digs in each of those contests.

• Ring Around the Rosener
Senior opposite Jake Rosener made his presence felt in Friday night's win over UC Irvine, launching a season-high 15 kills on 24 total attempts with three errors. His .500 hitting average against the Anteaters is a career-best.

• Feels Like the First Time
Three Gauchos ended with double-digit kill totals as UCSB took down defending national champion UC Irvine last Friday night at the Bren Events Center. It marks the first time the Gauchos have beaten the Anteaters since January 6th, 2006- over four years ago. Set scores were 32-30, 30-32, 30-28 and 30-25 in favor of UCSB. Cullen Irons rattled off 22 kills to go along with 10 digs while hitting at a .375 clip. Jeff Menzel led the Gauchos in kills on the night, tallying 27 on 53 attack attempts. Dylan Davis connected on five swing attempts and added three service aces. Vince Devany had a season-high 65 assists.

• You Look Familiar, Do I Know You From Somewhere?
Last Wednesday's match against UCLA (1/20) fell into familiar territory for UCSB, as the Gauchos let a 2-1 lead slip away against the Bruins, 30-19, 23-30, 24-30, 30-25, and 15-11 at Pauley Pavilion. The Gauchos started the match on fire, hitting at a .309 clip over the first three sets, but limped to the finish, swinging at a .176 rate throughout the final two frames. It marked the third time in the young season that UCSB has let a 2-1 set lead slip away in a loss (1/7/10 vs. LBSU, 1/13/10 vs. LBSU, 1/20 vs. UCLA). Menzel collected a .345 (25-5-58) hitting percentage on the night while notching 25 kills, seven digs, and four blocks. Cullen Irons was second on the team with 20 kills. Vince Devany had 53 assists and Andy McGuire had a match-high 13 digs.

• Seein' Cardinal
The No. 2 Stanford Cardinal came away with a weekend split against No. 4 BYU, bringing their MPSF and overall record to a respectable, 3-1. UCSB will have its hands full containing Brad Lawson and Gus Ellis, who launched 22 kills and 12 kills, respectively, in the Cardinal win. UCSB did not fare too well with Stanford a season ago, dropping a five set match against the Cardinal at Rob Gym on February 21, 2009. Set scores were 30-26, 26-30, 24-30, 30-21, and 15-13 in favor of Stanford. On March 28th, UCSB lost a 3-1 decision at Burnham Pavilion. Scores were 30-24, 30-19, 23-30, and 30-24.

• Go Get `Em Tiger
UCSB went 3-0 against the Pacific Tigers in 2009, dropping just a single set in the teams' three contests. The Gauchos opened the 2009 season with a 3-1 win at the Elephant Bar/Santa Barbara Invitational, defeating the Tigers, 29-31, 30-28, 31-29, and 30-25 at Rob Gym. UCSB swept Pacific on February 20th in MPSF play, 30-26, 30-23, and 30-17, as middle blockers Sam Moisenco and Scott Slaughter combined for 12 blocks and a .600 overall hitting percentage. In his last contest of the 2009 campaign, Jake Rosener launched a career-high 18 kills as the Gauchos swept the Tigers 30-26, 30-22, and 30-25 at Alex G. Spanos Center. UCSB has defeated Pacific in eight straight contests dating back to March 11th, 2006.

• BE Great
In 2009, UCSB Athletics unveiled the BE Great initiative. BE Great is dedicated to maximizing leadership ability, strong on-campus interaction, and general welfare for all 450 student-athletes and Intercollegiate Athletics staff at UC Santa Barbara. BE Great also focuses on personal and career development, diversity and social awareness, and ensuring academic success.