Saturday, April 24, 1999
Coaches-UCLA: Al Scates (37th season, 966-153, 17 NCAA titles). UH: Mike Wilton (7th season, 137-61).
vs. UCLA Bruins
Season-UCLA: 20-6 (14-5 MPSF, Mountain third). UH: 18-9 (11-8 MPSF, Pacific second).
Ranking-UCLA: No 3. UH: No. 8.
Series: UCLA leads, 34-8, and has won the last two meetings in straight sets. The Bruins lead the series in Honolulu, 16-7. The last Hawaii win was last March 21 in a nonconference match at the Sheriff Center.
Top players-UCLA: Brandon Taliaferro (6-5 Jr. S) 16.7 apg; Adam Naeve (6-10 Jr. Opp) 4.6 kpg, 1.7 bpg; Fred Robins (6-6 Sr. SW) 2.7 kpg, 2.5 dpg); Evan Thatcher (6-8 Jr. Opp) 3.9 kpg; Danny Farmer (6-4 Sr. Q) 3.7 kpg. UH: Mason Kuo (6-2 Sr. S) 16.50 apg; Brenton Davis (6-4 So. Opp) 4.75 kpg, 1.48 dpg; Clay Stanley (6-9 So. Opp) 4.60 kpg, 25 aces; Torry Tukuafu (6-6 So. OH) 4.42 kpg, 1.89 dpg., 22 aces; Andre Breuer (6-9 Jr. MB) 4.11 kpg, .404, 1.74 bpg; Dejan Miladinovic (6-7 So. MB) 3.72 kpg, 1.90 ppg, 25 aces.
About the Bruins: UCLA lost an unprecidented four consecutive matches in midseason but has rebounded to win its last nine. Last week, the Bruins won the 22nd Kilgour Cup, defeating Stanford in three and snapping a three-game losing streak to the Cardinal ... Seniors Danny Farmer and Fred Robins, playing in their last regular-season match in Pauley Pavilion, each put down 12 kills ... UCLA leads the MPSF in ace average (1.85) and dig average (12.36). The Bruins owe their dominance in digging to Robins, a Kamehameha Schools product, who has led the country in digs most of the season ... This is the first time since the MPSF went to the current playoff format in 1993 that UCLA has opened the playoffs on the road. It is also the first time since 1988 that the Bruins finished lower than second in the conference ... UCLA has won 17 national championships, nine of those coming when the Bruins hosted the final four. UCLA is 24-0 in NCAA Tournament matches played at Pauley Pavilion ... Last May, the Bruins won their 17th title at the Sheriff Center.
About the Rainbows: Hawaii saw its 11-match home winning streak snapped last Saturday in five by Southern Cal. The Rainbows won in four against the Trojans Friday to clinch the first-round hosting duties ... Hawaii is 15-2 at home, with the only other loss coming to UCLA in the January Outrigger Hotels Inviational. In that Jan. 22 loss, the Rainbows were without All-American blocker Andre Breuer. Dejan Miladinovic led UH with 14 kills, hitting .423, in front of what has been the largest crowd to see Hawaii play this season (9,562) ... In the April 2 match at UCLA, the Rainbows hit just .235. Breuer had 14 kills and Miladinovic 13 ... Currently, Miladinovic ranks second in the MPSF in blocking (1.97 bpg) and Breuer is fourth (1.83 bpg).Breuer needs three block solos to pass Rick Tune for ninth place on the career list and seven total blocks to pass Allen Allen for the No. 5 spot ... Sophomore Brenton Davis came off the bench both nights against the Trojans to lead Hawaii in kills. He had 28 kills in each of the matches ... The Rainbows are 6-8 in first-round matches and 3-0 when opening the playoff at home.
End quote: "We need every one of our players to be committed if we're going to win," said coach Mike Wilton. "At times during the season, some of our guys have been committed, others have just been involved. Here's a story about committment. A pig and a chicken want to have bacon and eggs for breakfast. The chicken says, 'Sure, I'll be involved.' The pig says, 'Easy for you to say. I'm the one who has to be committed.' Our guys have to be committed to leaving everything out on the floor."
First serve: Tonight at 7 p.m., Stan Sheriff Center.
On the air: Live on KFVE (Channel 5), 10:30 p.m. rebroadcast. Live on KCCN 1420-AM.