No. 13 UCSB Heads to No. 9 Stanford and Pacific This Week

No. 13 UCSB Heads to No. 9 Stanford and Pacific This Week

Feb. 6, 2008

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The Schedule
Friday, Feb. 8, 7 p.m.
#13 UCSB at #9 Stanford
Maples Pavilion
Stanford, Calif.

Saturday, Feb. 9, 3 p.m.
#13 UCSB at Pacific
Alex G. Spanos Center
Stockton, Calif.
Online audio:

Against Stanford
Last Meeting: 1/25/08 at UCSB
Result: Stanford 3, UCSB 0 (30-28, 30-26, 30-26)
2008 Series: Stanford 1-0
2007 Series: UCSB 2-0
All-Time Series Record: UCSB leads 41-23
Last UCSB Win: 3/31/07 at UCSB
Result: UCSB 3, Stanford 0 (30-25, 30-26, 30-26)
Current Streak: Stanford one win

Against Pacific
Last Meeting: 1/26/08 at UCSB
Result: UCSB 3, Pacific 0 (30-26, 30-21, 30-22)
2008 Series: UCSB 2-0
2007 Series: UCSB 2-0
All-Time Series Record: UCSB leads 15-10
Last Pacific Win: 3/11/06 at Pacific
Result: Pacific 3, UCSB 0 (30-27, 30-22, 30-28)
Current Streak: UCSB four wins

Several Matches to be Broadcast by KCSB
Starting with the Jan. 25 tilt against Stanford, KCSB will begin live broadcasts of select matches. You can either tune in to 91.9 FM or listen to the online broadcast at The double-header against Hawai'i Feb. 1-2 will be broadcast live by KCSB with the second match available online only. You can listen online to the Feb. 15 match vs. UC Santa Cruz and the Feb. 20 contest against UCLA will be on the radio as well as online. Other matches may be added in the future.

Track the Matches Online
For the first time ever, UCSB men's volleyball matches can be followed live online with Gametracker. All home matches and select road contests will be included. Just log on to, 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 even view player bios. Gametracker is free of charge and works on PCs and Macs. You just need to have Flash and Java installed and enabled.

Brunner Named National and MPSF Player of the Week
Middle blocker Theo Brunner was named the Sports Imports/AVCA National Player of the Week as well as the Molten/MPSF Player of the Week after helping lead UCSB to a series sweep over Hawai'i. Over the two matches, Brunner hit .459 (46-7-85) and averaged over five kills, one block, and almost six points per game. He played in all nine games during the series. On Feb. 1, Brunner put away a match high 21 kills and totaled a match best 24 points as UCSB took a grueling five-game win over the Warriors. He hit .462 (21-3-39) with six digs and five blocks. The following night, Brunner continued his hard-hitting ways with a team high 25 kills, hitting .457 (25-4-46). He also added four blocks and 27 points as the Gauchos won 3-1 in a match that saw all four games go to extra points. Brunner shares this week's MPSF honor with BYU outside hitter Ivan Perez.

Gauchos Sweep Season Series Against Hawai'i (again)
For the second straight year, UCSB swept its regular season series against Hawai'i with marathon match wins last week in Santa Barbara. In the series opener, the Gauchos won their first five-gamer of the season by scores of 29-31, 30-26, 25-30, 30-21, and 15-13. Theo Brunner had a match-high 21 kills and libero Andy McGuire totaled a career-high 20 digs. Neither team hit well with UCSB finishing at .195 (74-37-190) and Hawai'i at .157 (61-32-185). However, the Gauchos poured it on late, hitting .421 (22-6-38) in game four and .368 (9-2-19) in the deciding frame. The highest the Warriors hit was .220 (14-5-41) in the third game. Hawai'i was tough at the net, out-blocking Santa Barbara 24 to 10.5. The Gauchos countered on defense with 80 digs to the Warriors' 65. Saturday's match saw all four games go to extra points with UCSB taking a 3-1 win by scores of 32-30, 30-32, 36-34, and 36-34. Again, Brunner led the Gauchos with a career-high 25 kills. Jeff Menzel followed with 23, Phil Mathews had 19, and Mike Runkle finished with 12. Defensively, McGuire posted a match-high 18 digs, while Mathews totaled 12 and Menzel added 10. Menzel led UCSB at the net with five blocks. Hawai'i out-hit Santa Barbara .299 (74-24-167) to .254 (90-40-197) and again owned the block, out-stuffing the Gauchos 17 to 10. The match saw the score tied 55 times, including 19 occasions in the opening set. In game four, the Gauchos found themselves down by as many as nine points at 21-12 before coming back to win it.

Career Highs Aplenty
Several Gauchos set new career highs during the Hawai'i series. Here are some of the more notable ones: Theo Brunner: 25 kills (2/2), 27.0 points (2/2); Max Klineman: 10 digs (2/1); Phil Mathews: 19 kills (2/2), 12 digs (2/2), 22.0 points (2/2); Andy McGuire: 20 digs (2/1); Jeff Menzel: 10 digs (2/2), 30.0 points (2/2); Mike Runkle: 12 kills (2/2), .562 hitting (2/1), nine digs (2/2), 13.5 points (2/2); Scott Slaughter: seven kills (2/1), .778 hitting (2/1). A majority of UCSB's individual and team season highs were also set during the Hawai'i matches (see page 3).

Brunner Closing in on 1,000
Heading into the matches at Stanford and Pacific, Theo Brunner has 966 career kills, just 34 short of 1,000. Brunner will be the 10th Gaucho to accomplish the feat. The last UCSB player to register over 1,000 career kills was Evan Patak, who finished his stint in 2007 with 2,112, two short of becoming UCSB's all-time kills leader.

Devany Will Not Redshirt the 2008 Season
Freshman setter Vince DeVany made his collegiate debut Jan. 26 against Pacific at Rob Gym. Originally scheduled to redshirt the 2008 season, Devany dressed against the Tigers and recorded his first career kill on his first career attempt. He also added four assists in the win. Devany and opposite Jeff Menzel are the only true freshman that have seen the floor so far for the Gauchos. Ben Douglas, Blaine Nielsen, Jordan Nuni, Jake Scalise, and Alex Williams are still scheduled to redshirt this year.

Preston Will Retire Following the 2008 Season
Ken Preston, easily the winningest coach in UCSB men's volleyball history and one of the winningest active coaches in the nation, will retire following the 2008 season, his 30th as head of the Gaucho program. Preston will remain a member of the UCSB Athletics Department through the end of 2008 and will assist in the search for his successor in the spring. Preston began his UCSB head coaching career in 1979. In his 29 seasons, he has compiled a 506-364 overall record for a winning percentage of .582. He has guided the program to 21 of its 29 seasons of .500 or better, including 19 winning seasons. His teams have qualified for 19 postseason appearances and in 1988, Preston's squad advanced to the NCAA Final Four and then the NCAA Championship match. In 2007, UCSB had one of its most successful seasons in several years with a 20-14 overall record and a 14-8 mark in the MPSF. The Gauchos, who climbed as high as No. 3 in the national rankings, posted a victory over visiting UCLA in the quarterfinals of the MPSF Tournament to cap the campaign. Preston recorded his 500th career win with a victory at IPFW in March. In addition, two players - Theo Brunner and Evan Patak - were named AVCA First Team All-Americans. Prior to coming to UCSB, Preston coached at Cal Poly, Wright State (Dayton, Ohio), and Westmont College in Santa Barbara. In addition to his collegiate experience, Preston has spent extensive time on the international circuit, serving in both head and assistant coach capacities at the Olympics, World Championships, Pan American Games, and the World University Games. A search for Preston's successor will take place in the spring. Preston will be a key member of the committee assigned to select the new coach.

New Mugs on the Coaching Staff
Head coach Ken Preston welcomes a pair new faces to his 2008 coaching staff. Most recently, Lee Nelson joined the Gauchos as associate head coach. Nelson replaced Aaron Mansfield, who left this summer to try out for the U.S. National Team as a libero. Nelson came from Fresno State, where he was the top assistant with the Bulldog women's program. He played at UCSB from 1985-89 and was also an assistant coach under Preston from 1997-99. Lee graduated from UCSB in 1991. He was raised in Santa Barbara and is a 1984 grad of Santa Barbara High School. Ricardo DoMonte was added to the staff during the summer of 2007. A native Brazilian, he coached the UCSB men's volleyball club team to a national championship in 2007. Since 2002, doMonte has served as the Volleyball Director for the Page Youth Center/Santa Barbara Boy's Volleyball Club. He has coached elite level players indoors and on the beach in both Brazil and United States, and has worked at several UCSB volleyball camps.

Gauchos Pick Up Four During Fall Signing Period
UCSB picked up four high school seniors during the 2007 fall signing period. Outside hitters Grant Goswiller, Mark Liebermann, and Matt Townsend, as well as middle blocker/opposite Jake Piva will don the blue and gold for the 2009 season. Goswiller, a 6-foot-3 outside, hails from Coto de Caza, Calif. and Tesoro High School. He has also played club ball for Balboa Bay and OC Riptides. Goswiller was an all-tournament selection at the 2007 Junior Olympics (17 Open) in Atlanta. Outside of volleyball, he was a member of the Lionsheart Community Service Club and the Invisible Children's Club. In the classroom, Goswiller was a three-year Presidential Honor Roll member. Liebermann is from Newport Beach, Calif. and Newport Harbor High School. The 6-foot-5 outside was part of a Balboa Bay Volleyball Club squad that took first place at the 2007 Holiday Classic. Piva, a 6-foot-8 middle/opposite, is from Valencia, Calif. and won a CIF title with Valencia High School, a perennial powerhouse in the Foothill League. With Santa Monica Beach Club, he won a 2007 title in the Open Division and has twice been named all-tourney at Junior Olympics. Townsend is from Granada Hills, Calif. and plays for Chaminade College Prep. A four-year letterwinner, the 6-foot-4 outside has garnered First Team All-Mission League honors. In 2007, he was a member of the Southern California Volleyball Association Regional Team that competed at the Slovenia Global Challenge. Townsend won gold at the 2007 Junior Olympics (17 Open) and silver at the 2006 JOs (16 Open).

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