Warriors return with another loss


POSTED: Sunday, March 15, 2009

It's going to be a long trip home. Yet again.

For the third time this season, the Hawaii men's volleyball team got on a plane back to Honolulu after dropping two road matches. Packed in the luggage from San Diego is some major disappointment and concern.

Have the Warriors played themselves out of a postseason spot with the two losses to UC San Diego?

“;I don't know if we're mathematically eliminated,”; Hawaii coach Mike Wilton said after his team fell to the Tritons 30-21, 30-27, 23-30, 28-30, 15-13 last night. “;All I know is we have got to win some games.”;

Last night's loss at RIMAC Arena dropped the Warriors to 4-13 overall, 3-11 in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation. Hawaii is sitting in 10th place in the 12-team league with eight MPSF matches left.

The top eight teams advance. With the two wins over the Warriors, the eighth-place Tritons (10-10, 6-9) continued on the way to their first MPSF playoff berth.

Last night, UCSD did so with a balanced attack that saw three players finish with 15 kills: Frank Fritsch, Jason Spangler and Gerald Houseman. Will Ehrman (Punahou '06) added 14, including the one that ended the match after 2 hours and 27 minutes.

The Tritons outblocked the Warriors 20-17, with Calvin Ross in on 12.

It was just the second time Hawaii had played a five-set match; the other was a 3-2 win over then-No. 1 Cal State Northridge. The Warriors got career highs from senior Sean Carney and sophomore Brennon Dyer, both finishing with 19 kills.

The Warriors lineup again was tweaked, with Steven Grgas moving back to middle from opposite and freshman middle Jarrod Lofy sitting out the match. The revolving door at outside hitter continued, with Joshua Walker departing early in Set 2 after hitting .000.

Eventually the combination worked for Hawaii, but not until the Warriors had dug themselves into an 0-2 hole. Hawaii went on a rare scoring run in the beginning of Set 3, taking a 9-3 lead on the serves of Matt Rawson.

The Warriors led by as many as eight (17-9) and extended it to 26-20, with Dyer putting down three of his kills down the stretch. Grgas and Jim Clar blocked Fritsch to force Set 4.

The Tritons were poised to win in four for the second straight night, leading 20-17. A kill by Clar helped the Warriors catch the Tritons at 24 and a kill by Dyer gave Hawaii the lead for good at 25-24. The Warriors needed two swings to win it, doing so on a dump by setter Nejc Zemljak.

Hawaii blinked ... and UCSD jumped out to a 7-2 margin in the deciding set. The Warriors rallied to tie it at 11 with Grgas and Carney stuffing Ehrman.

Carney's 18th kill tied it at 12, but a service error—UH's 22nd—and a block of Zemljak gave the Tritons match point at 14-12. Carney's final kill extended it one more play with Ehrman connecting on a quick set to the left pin to thread the Warrior block to end it.


UC San Diego def. Hawaii

30-21, 30-27, 23-30, 28-30, 15-13























































































































































Warriors (4-13, 3-11)



Tritons (10-10, 6-9)

Key—g: games; 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 (4): Carney 2, Rawson, Dyer. UC San Diego (6): Bannan 3, Fritsch, Ehrman, Ross. Assists—Hawaii (61): Zemljak 52, Carney 3, Cervantes 2, Dyer 2, Walker, Clar. UC San Diego (67): Bannan 64, Ross, Houseman, Leserman.
T—2:27. Officials—Kevin Cull, Jesse Martinez . A—198.


MPSF standings

UC Irvine122.857 17-3
Pepperdine112.846 1/212-2
CSU Northridge123.800 1/216-3
USC94.692 2 1/213-5
BYU75.583 411-8
Stanford76.538 4 1/214-7
Long Beach State76.538 4 1/210-8
UC San Diego69.400 6 1/210-10
UCLA59.357 79-12
Hawaii311.214 94-13
UC Santa Barbara312.200 9 1/26-13
Pacific013.000 12 1/23-18

UC San Diego def. Hawaii, 30-21, 30-27, 23-30, 28-30, 15-13
BYU def IPFW, 30-23, 30-17, 30-20
Long Beach State def. Penn State, 30-26, 30-24, 23-30, 27-30, 15-11
Pepperdine def. George Mason, 30-27, 30-22, 30-23
USC def. New Jersey Tech, 30-19, 30-28, 30-17