The second ranked UCLA men's volleyball team enters the regular season stretch drive with a first round home playoff berth assured and the assurance as host of the MPSF Tournament if it wins its four remaining matches.
The Bruins, 20-3 overall and 13-2 in league play, travel to CS Northrdige Fri., Apr. 3 for a 7 p.m. league match at the Matadome. The Bruins return home Apr. 7 to host Loyola Marymount in Pauley Pavilion at 7 p.m. before hosting Pepperdine, Apr. 10 in what could be the MPSF Mountain Division decider for both teams. UCLA ends its regular season Apr. 14 on the road against UC Irvine.
Cal State Northridge, 8-12 overall and 4-11 in MPSF play, has won four straight, including a sweep over No.15 San Diego State Mar. 26 at home. The Matadors also boast victories over three other former top 15 teams: 3-2 over UC Santa Barbara; 3-2 over Pacific; and 3-2 over USC. UCLA leads the series with CSN, 36-2, and has won 11 straight, including a 3-0 victory on Feb. 21 at Pauley Pavilion.
The Bruins' 54-match winning streak against Loyola Marymount will be on the line Apr. 7 at Pauley Pavilion. The Lions this season have recorded first-ever victories over Stanford (Feb. 21) and USC (Feb. 10). Two weeks ago, the Bruins traveled to Hawaii for a pair of key matches against the fourth ranked Rainbows. UCLA won the league match on Mar. 20, 3-1, but dropped the non-league contest, 3-0 the following night. In the Mar. 20 match, the Bruins got a strong performance from freshman Mark Williams, who came off the bench to pound 11 kills and block four balls. Local product Fred Robins recorded a double-double, 10 kills and 13 digs, and sophomore Adam Naeve added a team high 21 kills.
In the non-league rematch the next night, the Bruins were led by Naeve's 19 kills, while the Rainbows boasted four players with double-figure kills, led by sophomore Andre Breuer's 22 kills.
UCLA VB QUICK FACTS Upcoming Matches* Apr. 3 UCLA at CS Northrdige*, 7 p.m. Apr. 7 UCLA vs. LMU*, 7 p.m. Apr. 10 UCLA vs. Pepperdine*, 7 p.m. *All match times Pacific. *MPSF match Recent Results Mar. 20 UCLA d. Hawaii*, 3-1 Mar. 21 Hawaii d. UCLA, 3-0 Probable Starters: #3 Brandon Tailaferro, 6-5, So., S, San Clemente, CA (1.1kpg, 17.0apg, 1.8dpg, 0.8bpg) #14 Fred Robins, 6-6, Jr., OH, Waimanalo, HI (2.5kpg, 2.5dpg, 0.5bpg) #5 Mark Williams, 6-7, Fr., OH, Los Angeles, CA (3.1kpg, 1.8dpg, 0.4bpg) #17 Tom Stillwell, 6-8, Sr., Q, Northridge, CA (3.6kpg, 1.6dpg, 1.3bpg) #18 Adam Naeve, 6-10, So., Q, Westchester, CA (5.4kpg, 1.6dpg, 1.1bpg) #20 Ben Moselle, 6-4, Sr., OH/Op, Encinitas, CA (3.5kpg, 1.7dpg, 0.7bpg) OR #9 Evan Thatcher, 6-8, So., Op, Encinitas, CA (3.8kpg, 1.5dpg, 0.8bpg) Substitutions: #15 Danny Farmer, 6-4, Jr., Q, Los Angeles, CA (3.4kpg, 1.1dpg, 0.7bpg) #19 Charlie Jackson, 6-0, Sr., S, Poway, CA (0.2dpg)