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49ers sweep Cal State Northridge for first MPSF win

Senior Brad Hemmerling pounded down a match-high 13 kills in a 3-0 win over Cal State Northridge on Friday.

Feb. 3, 2012

Box Score

LONG BEACH - The 11th-ranked Long Beach State men's volleyball team picked up its first Mountain Pacific Sports Federation win in convincing fashion as it swept No. 10 Cal State Northridge, 25-16, 25-19, 25-20, Friday evening at the Walter Pyramid.

LBSU, which avenged a five-set loss at CSUN on Jan. 20, improved to 5-4 overall and 1-3 in MPSF action. After playing their first six matches on the road, the 49ers have also started off their home slate with three consecutive sweeps.

Long Beach State hit a blistering .423 and owned a lopsided 11.0-to-4.0 advantage in blocks.

Senior Brad Hemmerling paced LBSU with 13 kills and five blocks, while sophomore Taylor Crabb finished with 10 kills and a match-high seven digs. Senior Ryan Meehan also had seven kills, five blocks and three aces. Meehan did not commit an error on nine swings for a season-best .778 clip.

Sophomore Jeff Ornee led the 49ers in blocks for the fifth-straight match as he finished with six and sophomore Connor Olbright directed the offense with 25 assists.

In the first set, Long Beach State went up 4-1 after back-to-back kills from Meehan, forcing Cal State Northridge to take an early timeout. The Matadors were then able to come within two before the 49ers took an 11-5 lead on a Crabb kill. The two teams traded points until LBSU used a 9-3 run to open up a 21-11 advantage. Long Beach State controlled the game from there as a kill from Ornee eventually ended it at 25-16.

The 49ers carried the momentum into the second set, pulling ahead 11-4 on an Ornee service ace. CSUN then reeled off four unanswered points to close the gap to three, but the rally came to an end when the Matadors missed their serve after an LBSU timeout.



Northridge eventually took its first lead of the set at 18-17 following a pair of kills from Matt Stork, but Long Beach State quickly regained the advantage with a Hemmerling kill and an Olbright ace. CSUN would tie it up at 19-19 before the 49ers proceeded to score the final six points with back-to-back aces from Crabb giving them the 25-19 victory.

Long Beach State pulled away late in a tightly played third stanza that saw 11 tie scores. It was knotted up at 15-15 before LBSU took the lead for good. The 49ers were up 22-20 when a Hemmerling kill and ace gave them match point. Ornee and Crabb then teamed up for a big double block in the middle to secure the 25-20 win.

Cal State Northridge (3-6, 1-4 MPSF) hit just .182 on the night and was led by Julius Hoefer and Matt Stork, who finished with seven kills each.

Long Beach State continues its MPSF slate at home next weekend when it entertains No. 7 Stanford (Feb. 10) and No. 12 Pacific (Feb. 11). First serve for both matches is 7 p.m. at the Walter Pyramid.

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