Men’s Volleyball Column

The UC Irvine men’s volleyball team had a spectacular season last year. In case you didn’t already know, they completed the season with an overall record of 26-5, a conference record of 17-5, a winning streak of 10 games in a row and, most importantly, they won the NCAA Championship last year and thus secured their position as number one in the nation.

This year’s season has also been going well. Although they did experience a fairly upsetting loss to USC on January 11, they did in fact “beat the beach” on January 25, three sets to two. So far, the team’s record is 8-3 overall, with a 5-3 record in the Big West.

Yes, the team unfortunately dropped from first in the nation to third; however, thanks to their win over UCLA last Tuesday in addition to their defeat of UCSB three sets to nothing on Thursday, they have moved up one more spot to number two in the nation.

 

Men’s Volleyball Now Ranks No. 2 Nationally, Just Behind BYU

True, second is not first, but it is still early in the season. These ’Eaters are finding their rhythm for the season and they’ve done a pretty good job so far; after their two wins last week, they are officially on a winning streak. So fans, don’t worry too much — the season runs until April, meaning they have more than enough time to gain back their no. 1 ranking and secure it for the duration of the season.

Now, if you have yet to go and watch a volleyball game here at UCI, you must do so as soon as possible.

Watching a men’s volleyball game is intense, to put it simply. The game is very fast-paced, so as a fan in the stands, you have to follow closely so as to not miss anything.

If you’re new to sports, don’t worry. The best part of watching a volleyball game, and the most intense part, are the instances in the game that occur when the players make an unbelievable save in order to stay in the game. It is during these instances that the atmosphere of the audience tenses and we are all watching every movement of the players and the ball intently in hopes that our team will win the point. When it is our team that has made the save, the results of these instances are either shrieks along with loud claps of happiness and excitement when we finally get the point or solemn claps of encouragement for our guys when they give up the point to their opponents.

Another part of the game that the fans tend to take a particular pleasure in is when one of our ’Eaters spikes the ball with such force, conviction and accuracy of placement that the opposing team doesn’t even touch it. When this phenomenon occurs, the fans become overwhelmed with excitement and pride, causing claps and cheers to boom throughout the Bren. These are instances that you should surely take part in at least once during your time here at UCI.

The ’Eaters’ next home game is on Thursday, February 14 — that’s right, Valentine’s Day — at 7 p.m. in the Bren Events Center. Go and bask in the awesome intensity that is collegiate men’s volleyball as the ’Eaters climb their way back to the prestigious no. 1 spot.