No. 10 UCSB Welcomes Defending National Champion UC Irvine Wednesday Night

March 1, 2010

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -

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• The Schedule
Wednesday, March 3, 2010 at 7 p.m.
No. 10 UC Santa Barbara (9-8, 6-5) vs. No. 12 UC Irvine (9-9, 5-8)
at Rob Gym
Series record vs. the Anteaters - 44-18
Streak - Won 1
2009 Series - UC Irvine won 2-0
Last time out vs. the Anteaters - W, 3-1 (1/22/10)

Friday, March 5, 2010 at 7 p.m.
No. 10 UC Santa Barbara (9-8, 6-5) at No. 7 USC (8-6, 6-5)
at Galen Center
Series record vs. the Trojans - 54-47
Streak - Lost 3
2009 Series - USC won 2-0
Last time out vs. the Trojans - L, 3-2 (2/5/10)

• Gauchos Perfect on East Coast Road Trip, Win Hall of Fame Classic
The UC Santa Barbara men's volleyball team went a perfect 3-0 without dropping a single set on their trip to Massachusetts last week, defeating Harvard, Springfield College, and No. 13 Ohio State on consecutive nights. UCSB opened the trip on Feb. 25 with a sweep of Harvard in Cambridge, 30-26, 30-22, and 30-21. Oliver Deutschman dished out a team-high 19 assists while freshman Dylan Davis hit .833 (5-0-6). UCSB then traveled to Springfield College for the 2010 Volleyball Hall of Fame Classic. In their opening round game versus the Pride, the Gauchos hit .333 (62-22-120) while sweeping the hosts, 39-37, 30-25, and 30-28. Jeff Menzel had 20 kills and Cullen Irons followed with 17. Scott Slaughter hit .667 with six blocks and 12.0 points. In the championship match against No. 13 Ohio State, four Gauchos had double-digit kill totals, led by Menzel (20) and Irons (15). Jake Rosener added 10 kills and Slaughter had 11 more kills as UCSB set a season-high with a .475 team hitting percentage (58-11-99). Set scores were 34-32, 32-30, and 30-17 in favor of UCSB.

• Stuck in Fourth Gear
Jeff Menzel moved into fourth place all time in UCSB program history on his second kill of the night versus Springield, surpassing Amaury Velasco's (1993-96) mark of 1,332. Now with 1,370 for his career, it will take time before Menzel matches third-place Kevin Collins' (1997-00) 1,628 career kills. Menzel also ranks fourth-place all-time in terms of career attack attempts with 3,019. He once again trails Collins for third-place all-time by 439 attack attempts. Menzel logged 20 kills in two of his team's three matches last week and hit .452 in the championship match of the Volleyball Hall of Fame Classic against Ohio State.

• Great Scott!
Scott Slaughter hit .629 (25-3-35) in his team's three wins last week, totaling 22 kills in 35 total attempts with only three errors as the Gauchos failed to drop a set on their East Coast swing. On Feb. 25 against Harvard, Slaughter hit .714 (5-0-7) in two sets played with an assist and a block. Against Springfield on Feb. 26, Slaughter had nine kills to go along with six block assists, 12.0 total points, and a .667 hitting percentage. Slaughter hit .562 (11-2-16) in the championship match of the 2010 Volleyball Hall of Fame Classic on Feb. 27 against No. 13 Ohio State, adding four blocks, an ace and an assist. Slaughter has now hit above .500 in six of the team's matches on the year.

• Flying Deutschman
Redshirt freshman setter Oliver Deutschman played his first significant minutes as a Gaucho on Feb. 25 vs. Harvard, dishing out a team-high 19 assists in relief of starter Vince Devany in UCSB's 3-0 victory over the Crimson. Deutschman added two digs and a block assist. He had previously seen action in one other match as a Gaucho, playing a single set in UCSB's 3-2 road victory over UC San Diego on Feb. 13. He logged four assists.

• On the Road Again... Hopefully Soon
The Gauchos are now 8-1 this season when playing on the road, a stark contrast to their 1-7 record at home. UCSB's lone road loss came at the behest of UCLA, a match that saw the Gauchos let a 2-1 set-lead slip away. The Gauchos have swept four of their away matches and have gone 2-1 in five-set matches on the road this year.

• Can I Get a Transfer?
After making his Gaucho debut on Feb. 17 vs. UCLA in relief of starter Jeff Menzel, outside hitter Todd Travis has made the most of his recent streak of playing time, collecting 16 kills, three assists, four blocks and an ace in just five sets played. Travis, a junior transfer, set career highs against Springfield College in assists (2), digs (3), and hitting percentage (.333).

• Straight From the `Vine
In its last conference match-up on Jan. 22, UCSB upset defending national champion UC Irvine, 3-1, at the Bren Events Center. Set scores were 32-30, 30-32, 30-28, and 30-25 in favor of the Gauchos. Jake Rosener hit a then-career high .500 and Jeff Menzel cannoned 27 kills in 53 total attempts with eight digs and 27.0 total points. Cullen Irons logged a double-double on the night with 22 kills to go along with 10 digs. Irons was named MPSF player of the week on the heels of his performance. It marked the first time the Gauchos had beaten the Anteaters since Jan. 6, 2006.

• Southern California Dreamin'
Ranked as the number one team in the 2010 AVCA Head Coaches Preseason Poll, No. 8 USC has been taking a dose of reality of late, falling recently to No. 3 CSUN in four sets last week. In their conference tilt on Feb. 5, the Trojans were able to hold-off a late Gaucho rally, defeating UCSB 3-2 in the Thunderdome. Set scores were 30-27, 22-30, 30-24, 26-30, and 15-10 in favor of the Trojans. Jeff Menzel led the Gauchos with 29 kills, three aces, six digs, and 33.5 points.

• 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 UCSB gauchos.com, roll over "Tickets", and then 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 our 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.

• 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.

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