UCI 3, UCSD 0
In the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation, MPSF, no. 2-ranked UC Irvine dominated and swept UC San Diego 3-0 at the Bren Events Center on Jan. 21. The Anteaters won their first MPSF match of the year, improving their record to 1-2 and 5-2 overall.
Senior Carson Clark had a team high 13 kills and sophomore Jeremy Dejno had eight kills. Both Clark and senior Dan McDonell had three service aces.
Sophomore Daniel Stork had a team high 34 assists and freshman Michael Brinkley had a team high seven digs.
“They are a great team,” Clark said. “We struggled a little bit in the second game but we came back in the third and did what we needed to do and play our style of volleyball so that was good for us.”
McDonell had back-to-back aces in the first set to take the lead. UCSD could not catch up to UCI’s lead as they were getting dominated in the first set.
UCI had one error in the first set, which really helped them to take the first set 25-19. The Anteaters had a lot of momentum in the game from great kills, blocks and service aces.
The Tritons did much better in the second set tying the game at 11-11. However, UCI remained consistent in knocking down kills and creating blocks that they got back in the lead. UCI’s teamwork and confident play helped them win the second set 25-19.
On the third set, the Anteaters quickly went on a seven-point run, including back-to-back aces from Clark, making the score 8-2, which forced a UCSD timeout.
The Tritons made many costly mistakes; they just could not get the ball over the net, made many unforced errors and seemingly lost focus as the game progressed.
UCI kept getting great kills and it seemed like UCSD could not find the answer to stop or block their kills. The ’Eaters crushed them on the third and final set 25-12.
The Anteaters beat the Tritons in every category: kills, errors, assists, service aces, service errors and team blocks.
“Our offense was probably the best,” Coach Speraw said. “We hit almost .500, so anytime we do that, you know that we are doing well offensively. In a lot of ways, we could have improved in the scoring side of things. Also, we obviously need to keep watching video and keep on getting better at some of the things we are doing defensively.”