Jose Delgado of Hawaii attempted a kill against Greg Pochopien and Matt Mueller of Lewis last night.

Warriors win easy
for once, sweep Lewis

Hawaii improves to 2-0, with
Brigham Young on tap tonight

This time there was no letdown.

This time there was no nail-biting, edge-of-the-seat fifth game.

This time Hawaii took care of business.


Led by Pedro Azenha's 16 kills and 14 from Jose Delgado, the Warriors swept past Lewis and into tonight's championship match of the 11th Outrigger Hotels Volleyball Invitational against Brigham Young. A Stan Sheriff Center crowd of 2,501 (4,521 tickets) saw Hawaii dispose of the Flyers 33-31, 30-25, 30-27 in 98 minutes.

The defending tourney champion Warriors (2-0) take on the Cougars (2-0) in tonight's second match in a true title contest. In last night's first match, BYU rallied past Penn State 27-30, 28-30, 30-27, 30-24, 15-11, using a balanced attack led by senior Michael Burke's 16 kills.

The Nittany Lions (0-2) face Lewis (0-2) today at 4 p.m. for third place.

"I see the Hawaii-BYU match as a real toss-up," Penn State coach Mark Pavlik said. "If BYU passes the ball as well as they did late against us, they'll keep things close. But if Hawaii can get them passing poorly, they'll be able to make some things happen."

A night after his career-high 20 kills helped beat Penn State, Delgado made things happen at the end of Game 1. Kills by the left-side hitter gave the Warriors their first game point at 31-30 and their second at 32-31; a hitting error by Lewis' Matt Mueller gave Hawaii the game and the momentum.

It was a team effort for the Warriors, getting 13 kills from outside hitter Matt Bender and 11 from middle Mauli'a La Barre, who hit a phenomenal .625 with just one error in 16 swings, including the booming match-ender.

Middle Dio Dante had just one kill but was in on seven of UH's 10.5 blocks. The Warriors hit .400 in Game 3 and finished at .352 for the night to the Flyers' .299.

"The whole team played really good and there's no one you can say is doing better than anyone else," said Azenha, hitting .429. "In Game 1, we started out really good, then let them come back. But we found a way to win and that's what good teams do. Just like the Wahine volleyball team, they found a way and so did we."

The only disappointment for UH coach Mike Wilton was he couldn't get more players in.

"Even though it was erratic at times, it was smooth enough that I didn't want to change it," Wilton said. "Brian (setter Beckwith) is doing a nice job. And what's nice to see there's finally a really good connection between him and Mau (La Barre). Mau's getting to be a pretty good player.

"We had a good start, but there's still a lot of ups and downs. It's still a little like Mr. Toad's Wild Ride at Disneyland, but we seem to be able to collectively pull together when we need to."

Dan Friend would like to see his Lewis team do the same, and with more consistency.

"We were up big (26-23) in Game 1 and couldn't get that one push we needed," the first-year coach said. "We were pretty fired up but couldn't get the push that would get us over the hump.

"I think we're just as talented as Hawaii and we fought back. We'd find a groove then make a dumb mistake. But Hawaii's scrappy and it should be a good game between them and BYU. But people should come early and see us, too."

Jeff Soler led the Flyers with 15 kills and Enrique Escalante added 13. Lewis was outblocked 10.5-3.

"What was good was we had a lot of players in the mix and when that happens, the other team doesn't know who it's going to," Bender said.

Cougar coach Tom Peterson said his team will need to play a lot better to top the Warriors tonight.

"Hawaii is a very good team, probably the team to beat this season," he said. "But that's why we came, so that we could get better.

"We need to play with more consistency and get better passing than we did. But it was great to come back the way we did."

BYU 3, Penn State 2: For the second consecutive night, the Nittany Lions went down in five. This time, it was against the Cougars in a 2-hour, 32-minute marathon that Pavlik called one of his most disappointing.

"It was as disappointing a match as I've experienced," the Penn State coach said, "including some final fours.

"My hat's off to the Cougars. They did a great job of coming back."

After the match, Pavlik hugged Peterson and offered his congratulations. It was the fourth meeting between Peterson, the former PSU head coach, and Pavlik, his former assistant.

Peterson is 3-1 against his former team and it came after it appeared the defending national champion Cougars would be swept.

BYU used a varied offense to pull it out, with setter Rob Neilsen mixing things up effectively. Freshman Ivan Perez and senior Casey Patterson energized the Cougars late and helped them find a rhythm that threw off the Penn State blockers.

The Lions had 11 blocks through Game 2, then none in Game 3 as BYU swung the momentum. Penn State played catch-up for most of the 28 minutes before tying it at 22-22,

Victor Batista served tough during a three-point run that gave the Cougars the lead for good.

Penn State switched setters early in Game 4, going with freshman Luke Murray. Murray had the Lions' middle attack working, but it wasn't enough as BYU continued to play steady.

It was 19-19 and then it was over as the Cougars again used a three-point run to go ahead for good. Penn State held off two game points to close to 29-24, but Patterson forced Game 5 by putting down his 14th kill.

BYU led from the onset of the final game. The Lions rallied to within 9-8 and 11-10 before Perez put down a kill and teamed with Burke for a block, and Batista served an ace to give the Cougars match point.

One sideout later, Burke nailed his last attempt to end it.

Also in double figures were Patterson and Batista with 15 and Russell Holmes with 14.

Alex Gutor had a match-high 17 kills for Penn State, and tied his career-high with five blocks. Matt Proper finished with 13, Kevin Wentzel 11 and Nate Meerstein 11.

Freshman libero Gary Vogel tied a Penn State record with 17 kills. The mark was set by All-American Ricky Mattei in a five-game loss to Hawaii in last year's tournament.

Hawaii def. Lewis

33-31, 30-25, 30-27

Flyers (0-2)

g k e att pct. bs ba d
Escalante 3 13 5 22 .364 0 2 0
Dayton 3 7 5 15 .133 0 0 2
Soler 3 15 7 32 .250 0 1 5
Mueller 3 8 3 13 .385 0 0 2
Sisk 3 6 0 9 .667 0 2 6
Pochopien 3 1 1 6 .000 0 1 2
Castellano 3 0 0 0 .000 0 0 11
China 1 0 0 0 .000 0 0 0
Totals 3 50 21 97 .299 0 6 28

Warriors (2-0)

g k e att pct. bs ba d
Delgado 3 14 8 31 .194 0 2 4
Beckwith 3 1 1 4 .000 1 2 3
Azenha 3 16 4 28 .429 1 1 3
Bender 3 13 3 23 .435 0 2 4
La Barre 3 11 1 16 .625 0 1 0
Dante 3 1 1 6 .000 2 5 1
Hakala 1 0 0 0 .000 0 0 0
Reft 3 0 0 0 .000 0 0 8
Rasay 1 0 0 0 .000 0 0 0
Totals 3 56 18 108 .352 4 13 23

Key -- g: games; k: kills; e: hitting errors; att: attempts; pct.: hitting percentage; bs: block solos; ba: block assists; d: digs.
Aces -- Lewis (2): Escalante, Pochopien. Hawaii (2): Beckwith, Dante. Assists -- Lewis (48): Sisk 41, Castellano 3, Soler 3, Dayton. Hawaii (52): Beckwith 50, Azenha, Bender.
T -- 1:38. A --2,501.

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