Jan. 20, 2002
Second-ranked UCLA swept fifth-ranked Hawaii to win its fifth consecutive Outrigger Hotels Invitational title in Honolulu, HI, Saturday night.
The Bruins won 31-29, 30-18, 30-26 in 96 minutes before 7,868 fans. They raised their overall record to 5-1. The Warriors fell to 3-2.
Freshman outside hitter Jonathan Acosta earned tournament MVP honors by slamming 14 kills and recording six digs. For the tournament he spiked 51 kills as the Bruins beat Lewis 3-1 and Penn State 3-0 before sweeping Hawaii.
Sophomore quick hitter Chris Pena led the Bruins with 16 kills (.625) and senior Matt Komer, who earned a spot on the all-tournament team for the second straight year, added 11 kills (.292) and three digs.
Hawaii's Costas Theorcharidis and Jose Delgado led the Warriors with 12 kills apiece. The Bruins held Theocharidis, last year's AVCA Player of the Year, to a hitting percentage of .156.
After an attack error by Acosta gave the Warriors a 29-27 lead in Game 1, things began to unravel for the hosts. Acosta atoned by slamming a kill, and Theocharidis was blocked by UCLA setter Rich Nelson and quick hitter Scott Morrow to tie the score at 29-29. A block by Acosta and Morrow gave the visitors the lead, and a kill by Acosta gave them a 1-0 advantage.
Hawaii's troubles continued in Game 2 as the Bruins took a 4-0 lead before the hosts called timeout. The Bruins got another point for a 5-0 lead and eventually built a 24-14 lead before cruising to a 30-18 victory.
Game 3 was a cat and mouse affair. The Bruins moved out to a 3-1 lead only to watch it evaporate when they committed three straight hitting errors. The Warriors built a four-point lead before the Bruins rallied to tie the game at 15-15 after a kill by Nelson, and a block by Morrow and freshman Brennan Prahler. Neither team could sustain an advantage until Hawaii committed two unforced errors that cost them the match. At 23-23, Hawaii setter Kimo Tuyay was called for a bad set and Acosta served an ace off Libero Jake Muise. Hawaii called timeout but Acosta's kill gave the Bruins a 26-23 advantage. From there the UCLA needed only to keep pace with Hawaii. Pena ended the match with a kill to the sideline.