April 11, 2008
The seventh-ranked UCLA men's volleyball team lost in four games Friday night at Stanford's Maples Pavilion, confounding its chances to host a quarterfinal playoff match next weekend.
Stanford won 24-30, 30-27, 30-20, 30-28 in two hours before 921 fans. The victory raised the Cardinal's record to 16-10 overall, 11-10 in league play. The Bruins fell to 16-13 overall, 11-10. Both teams are tied for fifth place, a loss behind Pepperdine with one match to play.
The Bruins managed to contain two of Stanford's top three hitters, but allowed freshman Spencer McLachlin and seldom-used junior Jesse Meredith to hurt them. McLachlin hammered 22 kills (.365) and scored 25.5 points, including the final two points in Game 4 to clinch the victory. Meredith came off the bench and pounded 10 kills (.450) and provided clutch defense with five digs.
The Bruins shut down Stanford senior Matt Ceran, limiting him to two kills, and held sophomore Evan Romero to a hitting percentage of .079 (14-11-38).
Sophomore Garrett Muagututia led the Bruins with his seventh double-double of the season: 22 kills (.300) and 11 digs. Junior Jamie Diefenbach added 10 kills (.368) and tied a career-high with 10 total blocks. Junior D.J. Stromath contributed 10.5 points on five kills (.333), three aces and five block assists. Ryan Ratelle spiked eight kills, added an ace and scored 10.5 points.
The Bruins travel to Pacific for their regular-season finale on Saturday, Apr. 13.