Live Coverage — Both of this week's matches will be televised by the Pac-12 Networks (Kevin Barnett and Al Scates). Fans can also follow the matches on UCLA's live Twitter feed @UCLAMensVB. Listen on line at www.uclabruins.com (Darren Preston and Denny Cline call the action).
In The Rankings — The Bruins are No. 6 in the AVCA national rankings this week after winning the title at the Outrigger Hotels Invitational. Stanford sits atop the AVCA rankings after winning its first three matches.
Scouting the Opponents — Stanford has won its first three matches of the season, including a season-opening 3-1 win over the Bruins in the UCSB Asics Invitational on Jan. 4. The Cardinal won both of its home matches last week against Lewis (3-1) and Grand Canyon (3-0). Pacific opened the year with a 3-1 win over CS Northridge in the Santa Barbara Inivitational. Last week, the Tigers dropped decisions to Grand Canyon (3-2) and Lewis (3-0).
The Series — UCLA leads the all-time series with Stanford (63-19) and with UOP (36-2). UCLA split last season's matches with the Cardinal with each squad winning on its home court (UCLA 1, at Stanford 3; Stanford 0, at UCLA 3). The Bruins swept the Tigers, winning each of last season's encounters 3-0.
Recapping Previous Action — The Bruins captured three straight wins over the weekend to secure their fourth straight Outrigger Hotels Inviational title. UCLA, ralllied back from a 2-1 deficit, using a career-high 23 kills by Robart Page to help defeat #11 Penn State 3-2 (25-15, 22-25, 23-25, 25-21, 16-14). Page hit .525 in the match and added 11 digs, a block solo and four block assists. Gonzalo Quiroga, with 15 kills, and freshman Mitch Stahl, with 11, were also in double digits. Trent Kersten hit .727 with 8 kills and six block assists. Steve O'Dell had 52 set assists in the match. Spencer Rowe had a block solo and six block assists.
UCLA swept past Ohio State 3-0 (25-14, 25-23, 25-21) in the middle match of the tournament. Page once again led the Bruins with 12 kills. Quiroga totaled 10 kills and seven digs.
The Bruins bested Hawai'i 3-1 (25-19, 14-25, 25-19, 25-16) in the final match of the Invitational. Page, who was named the tournament's Most Outstanding Player, led the team with 16 kills. Quiroga and Kersten each had 10 kills. O'Dell and Quiroga joined Page on the All-Tournament team. Page was also named Sports Imports/AVCA National Player of the Week.
UCLA dropped its season-opener in four sets to Stanford (22-25, 25-18, 25-20, 25-22) in the UC Santa Barbara Asics Invitational on Jan. 4. Quiroga topped the Bruin attack with 14 kills, hit .333 and added two aces. Stahl recorded 12 kills and four block assists. Spencer Rowe, who led the Bruins with a .459 hitting percentage last season, chipped in with eight kills and three blocks assists. Sophomore Steve O'Dell had 44 set assists and three aces. In exhibition pool play matches on January 3, UCLA bested CSUN 2-1 and UCSD 2-0, while dropping matches to IPFW 2-0 and Long Beach State 2-0.
Coach Speraw: Year Two at UCLA — John Speraw (UCLA '95) is in his second season as the head coach at his alma mater. In year one, the Bruins went 21-11 and advanced to the semifinals of the MPSF Tournament. In 10 seasons at UC Irvine, Speraw led the Anteaters to three NCAA championships (2007, 2009, 2012), and a 199-106 (.646) overall record. On Mar. 25, 2013, he was named head coach of the U.S. Men's National Team for the next quadrennial ending at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janiero. In the summer of 2012, he had served as an assistant coach for the USA Men's National Team, which advanced to the quarterfinals of the London Olympics. Speraw earned AVCA National Coach of the Year in 2006 and was given the USA Olympic Committee's National Coach of the Year award in 2007.
Coming Up — The Bruins remain at home next week for an MPSF match against UC Santa Barbara (Tues.). For ticket information, please call 310-UCLA-WIN.