No. 17 Fort Wayne bested No. 12 Concordia Irvine, while No. 3 UC Irvine, No. 7 UCLA, No. 10 UC Santa Barbara and No. 16 Cal State Northridge held rank and posted sweeps late Saturday night. All five winners hit .300 or better in the sweeps.
#7 UCLA def. #14 George Mason 3-0 (25-17, 25-13, 25-20)
- UCLA moves to 17-5; George Mason falls to 10-9
- Los Angeles, California
- Box Score
- UCLA Recap / George Mason Recap
Key Stats: UCLA hit at a .493 clip, including an eye-popping .706 effort in Set 2 and just six errors in the match, in a quick sweep of George Mason. The Bruins also bested the Patriots in kills (40-28), blocks (10-2) and aces (4-1), while holding the team to a .123 hitting effort.
Stat Leaders: Senior outside Jake Arnitz and senior opposite Christian Hessenauer downed 10 kills each to lead all hitters, while three other Bruins managed six or more kills. Hessenauer hit .667 (10-0-15) and Arnitz turned in a .600 effort (10-1-15), while redshirt senior middle Oliver Martin, junior outside Dylan Missry and sophomore middle Daenan Gyimah each notched six putaways, with Martin hitting a .857 clip (6-0-7) and putting up a team-high five stuffs. Missry also added five blocks, while Gyimah and junior setter Micah Ma’a added four apiece.
Redshirt junior middle Langston Payne registered nine kills on a .500 hitting effort to pace GMU. Sophomore opposite Hayden Wagner (6) and junior outside Kyle Barnes (5) followed, but both hit .000 for the match. Wagner served up the team’s lone ace and was one of four Patriots with a block in the match.
It Was Over When: Trailing 5-3 in Set 3, UCLA turned things around with a 14-5 run. Four blocks, three by Martin and Ma’a and one by Missry and Gyimah, aided the Bruin rally, which put the home team up 17-10. Missry and Arnitz also added two kills apiece in the stretch. George Mason was within five at 19-14, but UCLA had its first match-point attempt at 24-17. The Patriots thwarted three match-point tries, including a kill and a block by Payne, before Arnitz issued the final blow.
#3 UC Irvine def. #20 Stanford 3-0 (25-20, 26-24, 25-21)
- UC Irvine moves to 13-5; Stanford falls to 4-16
- Palo Alto, California
- Box Score
- UCI Recap / Stanford Recap
Key Stats: It was an offensive show between the Anteaters and Cardinal Saturday night as UCI hit .531 and Stanford managed a .384 effort. Both teams tallied 41 kills, but it was a 6-2 lead at the service line and a slight 4-3 advantage in blocks that gave UC Irvine the road sweep. UCI committed just seven hitting errors on the night.
Stat Leaders: It was a balanced attack for the Anteaters as five players turned in seven or more kills with junior opposite Karl Apfelbach leading the way with 10 putaways. Sophomore middle Scott Stadick (9), senior outside Aaron Koubi (8), freshman outside Joel Schneidmiller (7) and redshirt freshman outside Austin Wilmot (7) rounded out the group, which saw each hit .368 or better. Schneidmiller hit at a match-high .778 clip (7-0-9) and also chipped in three aces, while Stadick added two blocks and Koubi pulled up a team-high eight digs. Junior setter Dante Chakravorti put up three stuffs, while dishing out 37 assists and guiding the offense.
Junior outside Matt Klassen paced Stanford with 10 kills on a .500 hitting effort, while freshman outside Leo Henken and sophomore opposite Eli Wopat added eight apiece. Freshman middle Kyler Presho notched four kills and a team-best two blocks.
It Was Over When: UC Irvine broke away with a 6-1 run in Set 3 to go up 11-6 with help from two Apfelbach kills and a Schneidmiller ace. Stanford would get no closer than three the rest of the way. Up 13-10, the Anteaters scored six of the next eight to push ahead 19-12 thanks to three Cardinal miscues and another Schneidmiller ace. Stanford sliced the margin to three against 23-20 as Henken and Wopat notched two kills apiece. UC Irvine called timeout and iced the server to earn its first match-point try at 24-20. A Schneidmiller kill wrapped up the match two plays later at 25-21.
#10 UC Santa Barbara def. #11 Ball State 3-0 (25-13, 25-17, 25-19)
- UCSB moves to 9-5; Ball State falls to 11-9
- Santa Barbara, California
- Box Score
- Ball State Recap / UCSB Recap
Key Stats: UCSB served up eight aces and utilized an efficient offense to post a sweep of visiting Ball State, notching its fifth-straight win. The Gauchos hit at a .329 clip, while holding the Cardinals to a .071 effort. UC Santa Barbara also outdid BSU in kills (36-26), aces (8-0) and blocks (7.5 to 6). UCSB hit .417 in the opening stanza to set the tone for the evening.
Stat Leaders: Sophomore opposite Keenan Sanders carried the offensive load for the Gauchos with 14 kills on a .375 hitting effort, while also adding eight digs and an ace. Sophomore outside Roy McFarland (6), junior outside Corey Chavers (5) and redshirt junior middle Connor Drake (5) rounded out the offense. Drake hit at a .500 clip and put up three blocks alongside Chavers and redshirt sophomore middle Brandon Hopper.
Sophomore outside Matt Szews turned in seven kills and five digs to lead the Cardinals, while junior outside David Siebum added six kills. Senior middle Anthony Lebryk and senior middle Matt Walsh put up three blocks apiece. Fifteen players saw time in the match for the Cardinals with Szews and Walsh playing two sets apiece. Only senior outside Mitch Weiler saw time in all three sets offensively.
It Was Over When: Ball State led it 8-6 in Set 3 with help from two kills and a block by Lebryk. UCSB turned things on their head with an 11-5 run. McFarland downed back to back kills to give the Gauchos the 17-13 lead. Five Cardinal miscues and two Sanders putaways also aided the rally. BSU pulled within three on three occasions, last at 21-18, but could not hold off a final 4-1 run. Two errors coupled with kills by Sanders and McFarland sealed the sweep.
#16 Cal State Northridge def. Harvard 3-0 (25-20, 25-14, 25-23)
- Cal State Northridge move to 10-7; Harvard falls to 5-9
- Northridge, California
- Box Score
- Harvard Recap / CSUN Recap
Key Stats: The Matadors left no questions, winning the stat sheet in every category in the a sweep of Harvard. CSUN hit .300 or better in all three sets, including .375 in Set 2, while holding the Crimson to a .177 effort. Cal State Northridge also boasted the lead in kills (36-30), aces (5-2) and blocks (11-7).
Stat Leaders: Senior opposite Arvis Greene bagged 12 kills and put up two solo blocks, while hitting .391 to pace the Matadors. Junior outside Dimitar Kalchev (8) and senior middle Josiah Byers (7) were not far behind. Byers put up a match-high six blocks, while Kalchev served up four of the team’s five aces.
Four Harvard players managed five or more putaways with senior middle Brad Gretsch leading the way with seven kills. Senior setter Marko Kostich (6), senior middle Riley Moore (6) and senior outside Jack Heavey (5) followed. Kostich hit at a team-best .357 clip. Trevor Dow put up a team-high four blocks, while serving up an ace alongside sophomore setter Matthew Ctvrtlik.
It Was Over When: CSUN kicked off Set 3 on a 6-1 run, including two Kalchev aces, and did not relinquish the edge the rest of the way. The Crimson were within one twice, at 7-6 and 8-7, but the Matadors pulled away with two Sam Porter kills and a kill and a block by Greene to take a 15-9 lead. Despite trailing 22-17, Harvard did not quit, instead scoring six of the next eight and thwarting a pair of Matador match-point tries. The Crimson sliced the margin to one at 24-23 with help from three CSUN miscues and two Gretsch putaways, but a service error gave the Matadors the win.
#17 Fort Wayne def. #12 Concordia Irvine 3-0 (25-15, 25-22, 25-23)
- Fort Wayne moves to 15-5; Concordia falls to 9-10
- Irvine, California
- Box Score
- Fort Wayne Recap / Concordia Recap
Key Stats: Fort Wayne hit .337 for the match, including .400 in the final stanza, in a road sweep. The Mastodons also served up four aces and notched eight blocks in the win. For their part, the Eagles managed six blocks and just one ace. Fort Wayne trailed 41-32 in kills and hit just .144 on the night.
Stat Leaders: Redshirt junior outside Tony Price and sophomore outside Pelegrin Vargas split the offensive load for the Mastodons, posting 15 and 12 kills respectively. Price hit at a .625 clip, while Vargas added seven digs. Sophomore middle Richie Diedrich chipped in a team-best five blocks and five kills, while hitting .714 (5-0-7) and freshman middle Tomas Gago notched six kills and three blocks.
The Eagles used a balanced attack in the match with six players posting kills, including four with five or more. Redshirt sophomore outside Raymond Barsemian (8), redshirt sophomore outside Darcy Taig (7), junior middle Hunter Howell (6) and redshirt sophomore outside Parker Maki (5) made up the group. Howell put up three blocks, while hitting at a team-best .500 clip (6-0-12), while Barsemian added two stuffs and the team’s lone ace.
It Was Over When: Fort Wayne broke Set 3 open with a 6-2 run, turning a 6-all tie into a 12-8 advantage. Two kills and two blocks by Diedrich led the way for the Mastodons. Two Price putaways and a kill and a block by Gago lifted the Fort Wayne margin to five at 17-12. From there, Concordia chipped away, slicing the deficit to one at 21-20. Four Mastodon errors, including three service miscues, and three Jonathan Predney kills had the Eagles within striking distance. The teams traded points and a Howell kill held off the first Fort Wayne match point effort at 24-22. A service error by the junior, however, clinched the Mastodon victory.