Warriors get Beached


POSTED: Saturday, February 14, 2009

The night started out promising enough in Long Beach, Calif.

Even with a lineup tweaked by design and necessity, No. 10 Hawaii appeared to have things under control in its Mountain Pacific Sports Federation volleyball rematch with No. 7 Long Beach State.

Appearances were deceiving.





        NEXT UP

        vs. Stanford, Feb. 26



The 49ers, getting 19 kills from Josh Riley and 15 from Dean Bittner, snuffed the Warriors' upset hopes 26-30, 30-23, 30-24, 30-21. Long Beach State (7-5, 6-3 MPSF) needed two hours to top Hawaii (3-8, 2-6) for a fourth consecutive time.

“;The lights flickered on and off again, we just weren't consistent,”; Warriors coach Mike Wilton said. “;We can play really good volleyball and then it's not so good. We were up and down all night.

“;We've lost confidence and we've got to change that mentality.”;

Hawaii has almost another two weeks to make those changes. The Warriors don't play again until hosting No. 8 Stanford Feb. 26.

Wilton changed up his starting lineup last night, going with freshman Gus Tuaniga—who was very successful off the bench against the 49ers Thursday—and junior transfer Joseph Strotman. Freshman middle Jarrod Lofy started at middle when junior Matt Rawson was too ill to play.

The Warriors broke away to a 26-20 lead in Set 1 only to be caught at 26 when the 49ers had four blocks in a 6-0 run. Hawaii held, with Tuaniga putting down four of his team-high 18 kills and Steven Grgas and Jim Clar stuffing Bittner for the win.

The pattern of giving up long runs continued for Hawaii, which saw Long Beach State pull away at the ends of Sets 2 and 3. The 49ers evened the match when extending their 21-19 lead to 29-21, punctuated by Jim Baughman's ace. The Warriors held off two set points before Steven Hunt's serving error ended Hawaii's comeback.

Midway through Set 3 things went south for Hawaii. The Warriors led 18-17 before the 49ers took the lead for good behind a 3-0 serving run by Kyle McElderry. Hawaii got as close as 24-22 only to see Long Beach State close it out 6-2.

Set 4 was a nightmare for the Warriors, who trailed just 7-6 before getting blown away. Mike Klipsch teed off from the serving line as the 49ers rolled out to a 15-6 lead. The run included Grgas getting a yellow card for “;one to many complaints to the refs,”; Wilton said.

The deficit grew to 24-11 before Hawaii got on a little roll to pull to 24-15. All Long Beach State needed to do was side-out en route to the win.

The Warriors were outblocked 10-3 with no blocks in the final two sets.

Hunt came within a kill of a double-double when finishing with nine kills and 11 digs.

Baugham had a double-double with 10 kills and 11 block assists. The freshman middle had no errors on 14 attempts.

NOTE: Host Stanford (8-5, 4-4) picked up a huge win last night, knocking previously undefeated and second-ranked Pepperdine (7-1, 6-1) out of the MPSF lead with a 30-18, 28-30, 30-25, 30-24 victory. The victory by the Cardinal snapped a 16-match losing streak to the Waves.


MPSF Standings

UC Irvine71.875 11-2
Pepperdine61.857 1/27-1
USC51.833 18-2
CSU Northridge52.714 1 1/28-2
Long Beach State63.667 1 1/27-5
UCLA43.571 2 1/26-6
BYU33.500 35-6
Stanford44.500 38-5
UC San Diego25.286 4 1/25-6
Hawaii26.250 53-8
UC Santa Barbara17.125 63-8
Pacific09.000 72-12


Long Beach State def. Hawaii, 26-30, 30-23, 30-24, 30-21

USC def. Pacific, 30-25, 30-25, 30-24

Stanford def. Pepperdine, 30-18, 28-30, 30-25, 30-24

Lewis def. UCLA, 22-30, 30-26, 30-26, 21-30, 15-10

CSU Northridge def. Cal Baptist, 30-27, 30-27, 30-28

UC San Diego def. St. Francis, 30-20, 33-35, 30-27, 30-18

USC at Stanford
UCLA at Loyola-Chicago
UC San Diego vs. George Mason


Long Beach State def. Hawaii

26-30, 30-23, 30-24, 30-21

Warriors (3-8, 2-6)


49ers (7-5, 6-3)


Key—s: sets played; k: kills; e: hitting errors; att: attempts; pct: hitting percentage; d: digs; bs: block solo; ba: block assists; pts: points (kills + blocks + aces)

Aces—Hawaii (5): Grgas, Hunt, Carney, Tuiniga. Long Beach State (4): Baughman 2, Bittner, McElderry. Assists—Hawaii (55): Carney 48, Zemljak 5, Cervantes, Dyer. Long Beach State (59): Klipsch 48, Watten 5, Alexander 2, McElderry 2, Matsukado, Baughman.

T—2:00. Officials—Kim Pickering, Scott Hogue. A—1,022.