April 25, 2013
Fourth-ranked UCLA fell in five sets Thursday night in the semifinals of the MPSF Men's Volleyball Championship at BYU.
The Bruins, who led two sets to none prior to a 10-minute break between the second and third sets, ended their season with a 21-11 overall record. BYU raised its record to 24-4 and is an all-but-certain lock for the top seed at next week's NCAA Championship.
Set scores were 23-25, 21-25, 25-18, 26-24, 15-10 in front of 3,382 fans at Smith Fieldhouse.
The match turned in the fourth set when, after UCLA built a 7-1 cushion, BYU mounted an 8-1 run to seize control of the set and gain a psychological edge in the match. A key substitution at that point also helped the Cougars. Coach Chris McGown replaced setter Ryan Boyce with Tyler Heap and the latter player recorded 13 assists to steer the hosts to a 26-24 victory.
In the decisive run in set four, Heap recorded three assists and BYU blocked the Bruins three times (Heap was credited with block assists on two of them) to gain the momentum. From that point, the Bruins could not mount any sustained rallies and committed several key service errors, including one with the score tied 24-all. After that miscue, BYU's Ben Patch, who led the Cougars with 22 points, sealed the set with a kill.
In Set 5, six BYU blocks, including one at match point, proved to be the Bruins' unraveling. In the end, the Cougars dominated the net, 22.5 blocks to 11.5 for UCLA.
In Set 1, the Bruins prevailed despite committing nine service errors. They hit .457 for the set on the strength of 22 kills (to just 12 for BYU). At 23-all, UCLA's Gonzalo Quiroga recorded a kill and setter Trent Kersten blocked Patch to capture the set.
In Set 2, BYU overcame a 10-7 deficit to assume a 13-12 lead. From that point neither team took control until the Bruins broke a 19-all tie with kills from Quiroga and junior Robart Page to force the hosts to call a timeout. The teams traded points until the Bruins sealed the set with a 3-0 run on a kill by Kersten and a pair of BYU hitting errors.
Quiroga led both teams with 22 kills and 23.5 points, followed by 14 kills (.308) from Worley and 11 each from Kersten (.714) and Page.
Josue Rivera led BYU with 19 kills and Patch added 17.