No. 7 LBSU Men's Volleyball Tops No. 12 UC San Diego, 3-1
Jan. 26, 2013
LA JOLLA, Calif. - The seventh-ranked Long Beach State men's volleyball team topped No. 12 UC San Diego, 3-1 (25-17, 25-17, 17-25, 25-20), Saturday evening at RIMAC Arena.
Just one night after taking defending national champion UC Irvine to five sets, the 49ers bounced back from the tough loss with an important 3-1 road win that kept them in sole possession of second place in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation.
LBSU improved to 6-3 overall and 4-2 in conference play and now owns a 56-5 all-time record against UCSD.
Junior Dalton Ammerman led the way with a career-high 16 kills and nine digs, while classmate Taylor Crabb finished with 15 kills and eight digs. Junior Jeff Ornee had eight kills on .400 hitting to go along with five blocks. Redshirt freshman Taylor Gregory also compiled eight kills and a .545 attack percentage.
Junior Connor Olbright dished out a season-high 50 assists as the 49ers hit .364 on the night.
LBSU also owned a plus-eight margin in blocking (12.5-to-4.5), with senior Colten Echave registering a team-best six blocks.
UC San Diego (3-6, 2-4 MPSF) held a slight edge early in the first set before Long Beach State scored five unanswered points to take a 7-4 lead following a kill from Ammerman. It went back-and-forth until the Tritons had consecutive kills to cut the deficit to 13-12, but the 49ers then proceeded to go on an 8-3 run, capped by an Olbright ace, to pull ahead 21-15. They never looked back from there, cruising to the 25-17 victory.
There were seven tie scores in set two before LBSU went on a 7-0 spurt, which ended with an ace by Gregory, to hold a comfortable 19-12 advantage. UC San Diego started to chip away with three-straight points as it closed the gap to four, but Long Beach State finished strong, outscoring the home team, 6-2, down the stretch with an Edgar Palos kill ending it at 25-17.
UCSD got off to a quick start in the third frame, racing out to a 6-1 lead. The 49ers pulled within three on a kill from Crabb, but the Tritons would use a 9-4 run to go up by eight (16-8). UC San Diego led by at least six the rest of the way and had back-to-back kills to finish off the 25-17 win.
It was a seesaw battle in the fourth stanza with 13 tie scores, but Long Beach State made the final push to prevail, 25-20. Neither team led by more than one until a Gregory kill put LBSU up, 12-10. The 49ers stayed out front before UCSD knotted it up at 18-18. The two teams then traded points, but Long Beach State pulled away at the end, closing out the set on a 5-0 sprint.
UC San Diego hit .277 as a team and was paced by Vaun Lennon's 11 kills.
Long Beach State stays on the road next week, traveling to new MPSF member Cal Baptist for a 7 p.m. match on Tuesday, Jan. 29. The 49ers will also head to top-ranked BYU on Friday, Feb. 1.
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