No. 13 UCSB Dropped by No. 11 UCLA

3/13/2009

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SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - A match-high 26 kills from outside hitter Jeff Menzel wasn't enough to stave off defeat as the No. 13 UC Santa Barbara men's volleyball team was downed, 3-1, by No. 11 UCLA Friday in MPSF action at Robertson Gymnasium. Scores went 25-30, 30-27, 30-26, and 30-27 in favor of the Bruins, who completed a two-match season sweep of the Gauchos.
 
UCSB (6-13, 3-12 MPSF) had an off night offensively, hitting a paltry .161 (49-31-112) overall. After coming out with a .250 attack percentage in the opening set, the Gauchos fell all the way to .069 in the second. The third frame was more of the same with a lame .094 clip. Santa Barbara picked it up in the fourth set and posted its highest hitting number of the night, .259. However, UCLA, which finished at .342 (62-22-117), recorded a match-best .389 in the deciding set.
 
Menzel shouldered most of the attack for UCSB, taking 58 of the team's 112 swings. Opposite Jake Rosener had 10 kills (on 22 sets) and six blocks. Senior middle blocker Matt Thobe, filling in for an injured Scott Slaughter, tallied four kills, three aces, and five blocks.
 
UCLA (9-12, 5-9 MPSF), which had lost six of its previous seven matches coming in, spread its offense out as four players hit double figures in kills, including Jack Polales (17), Thomas Amberg (12), Sean O'Malley (12), and Garrett Muagututia (10).
 
Menzel and UCLA's Kevin Ker each had match-bests with seven digs.
 
The Bruins committed 29 errors from the service line. 
 
Following a week off for final exams, UCSB will return to action to host non-conference opponent Cal Baptist on Mar. 24 at 7 p.m. Tickets are available online at UCSBgauchos.com, by calling the Athletics Ticket Office at (805) 893-UCSB, or one hour prior to the start of the match at Robertson Gymnasium.

Article courtesy of UC Santa Barbara athletics.

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