No. 2 Pepperdine Downs No. 14 UC Santa Barbara in Four
Malibu, Calif. - The second-ranked Pepperdine men's volleyball team opened the 2008 season strong in defeating 14th-ranked UC Santa Barbara, 30-26, 30-23, 27-30, 30-22, in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation play at Firestone Fieldhouse on Wednesday night.
Junior opposite Paul Carroll (Forster, Australia), an All-American first teamer a year ago, recorded 30 kills and hit .523 on 44 swings. It was the fifth time in his career he reached the 30-kill mark. Senior setter Jonathan Winder (Irvine, Calif./Woodbridge HS), the national player of year last season, had 55 assists to go with six blocks, four kills and four digs.
The Waves (1-0, 1-0), who are breaking in three new starters and a new libero, received some good showings from several newcomers, including freshman middle blocker Tyler Jaynes (Granite Bay, Calif./Granite Bay HS), who had seven kills on 10 attempts to go with five blocks, and junior middle blocker Mark Hulse (Evanston, Ill./Evanston Township HS/Rutgers-Newark), who had five kills on six attempts and a match-high eight blocks.
"We had a lot of young guys that were playing in their first NCAA match, and I thought they all did well," Pepperdine Coach Marv Dunphy said. "We have a ways to go, but Santa Barbara played hard and played pretty well. In this league, every match is going to be hard. We didn't play our best, but sometimes that happens. I'm pleased with the way the young guys played, and I thought Paul was really good tonight. Jonathan set him better as the night wore on, and he's something special."
UC Santa Barbara (1-3, 0-1) was led by freshman outside hitter Jeff Menzel's 23 kills and senior opposite Theo Brunner's 14 kills.
Pepperdine hit .387 compared to .164 for the Gauchos and had a 16-7 edge in blocking. The Waves hit .370 or better in each of the three games they won. The Gauchos hit .333 in game three, but were under .200 in the other three games.
The Waves return to the court on Saturday (Jan. 12) when they host Cal State Northridge in MPSF action at 3 p.m. at Firestone Fieldhouse.
Article courtesy of Pepperdine athletics.