MVB Meets No. 4 Pepperdine Twice This Week
THIS WEEK — UCLA (8-3), ranked No. 8 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) poll, will host No. 4 Pepperdine (7-2) on Thursday (5 p.m.) in Pauley Pavilion presented by Wescom and then travel over to play in Malibu on Saturday (5 p.m.).
• Mar. 11 - First Serve v. Pepperdine: 5 p. m. PT
Live Video/Audio: http://pac-12.com/live/ucla
Live Stats: http://stats.statbroadcast.com/statmonitr/?id=345239
• Mar. 13 - First Serve at Pepperdine: 5 p. m. PT
Live Video/Audio: https://watchstadium.com/live/ucla-at-pepperdine-5/
Live Stats: http://stats.statbroadcast.com/broadcast/?id=326450
UCLA has won six of its last seven matches played this season and is coming off of a pair of 3-1 victories over Stanford last week (Saturday: 21-25, 25-18, 25-12, 25-19; Friday: 23-25, 25-15, 25-13, 25-21) and a Tuesday (3/2) sweep of Concordia in the rubber match of a three-match series. Cole Ketrzynski led the Bruins with 17 kills while hitting a season-best .500 in the (3/6) win over Stanford. Merrick McHenry had a career-best 17 kills in the Friday win. UCLA held Stanford to an opponent season-low of .111 on Saturday. The Bruins hit a season-high .554 in the CUI sweep (25-22, 25-20, 25-15), the highest percentage of any team in the nation this season. Ketrzynski (12), Austin Matautia (10) and McHenry (10) each recorded double-digit kills. McHenry hit .833 with no errors on 12 swings and hit .581 for the week to move to the top of the MPSF rankings for hitting percentage at .462.
All 2021 home matches are scheduled to be played in Pauley Pavilion presented by Wescom. At the current time, no fans will be present for UCLA home matches.
LAST MEETING -- UCLA and Pepperdine did not meet during the 2020 campaign. They were scheduled to play the week the pandemic halted the season. The Waves won the last meeting in 2019, in Malibu, 3-1. UCLA captured a five-set decision earlier in 2019 in Pauley Pavilion presented by Wescom. Pepperdine owned a blocking edge in both matches. UCLA held an advantage at the service line and in hitting percentage.
NOTES -- Cole Ketrzynski has reached double-digits in kills in all 8 matches he has played in this season ... he has recorded at least one ace in all but the last contest against Stanford (3/6) ... he has served up 15 aces to lead the team and his 0.50 average to begin the week ranked 14th in the NCAA ... he had a career-best five vs. Concordia (2/25) after having a total of four for all of the 2020 season ... Sam Kobrine was credited with back-to-back 10 dig matches against Stanford last week and was named the Molten/MPSF Defensive Player of the Week (3/8) ... he had 41 set assists in the sweep of CUI (3/2) in which UCLA hit a season-best .554 (highest match hitting % in the nation in 2021) ... he posted a career-high 49 set assists (3/5) win over Stanford ... Kobrine remains the only player in the nation to have registered a triple-double in 2021 -- vs. USC (2/13) 14 kills, 15 assists and 10 digs ... Merrick McHenry posted double-digit kills in all three of last week's wins with a best of 17 kills vs. Stanford (3/5) and was named Molten/MPSF Offensive Player of the Week (3/8) ... he had 10 kills with no errors on 12 swings vs. CUI 3/2) for a .833 percentage ... McHenry began the week ranked 1st in MPSF and 7th in NCAA in hitting % at .462 ... Ethan Champlin fired off five aces in the last win over Stanford (3/6) ... he tied his career-high with 13 kills at USC (2/20) while hitting .400 ... Austin Matautia had 9 kills at Concordia (2/27) and had career-best 5 blocks in (2/20) win at USC .... Matautia hit .400 with 8 kills in the win at BYU ... Cole Pender had 11 digs in the last win over Stanford (3/6), one shy of his career best ... he also had 11 digs in the 2021 opener against GCU ... Ian Parish posted career-highs of two aces and eight kills in the first win over Stanford (3/5) last week.
AT HOME -- The Bruins have posted a 5-1 home record in 2021 ... UCLA had an eight-match Pauley Pavilion win streak canceled with the USC loss (2/13/21) ... Over the past five-plus seasons, UCLA is 45-6 in matches played in Pauley Pavilion presented by Wescom (2016: 10-1--lost to UCI, 2017: 8-1--CSUN, 2018: 13-2--Long Beach 2xs, 2019: 7-1--Long Beach; 2020: 2-0; 2021: 5-1--USC).
ON THE ROAD -- UCLA is 3-2 on the road this season after sweeping USC, splitting a pair of matches at BYU and dropping a contest at CUI.
MPSF -- Due to the possibility of an unbalanced number of league matches played this year, conference wins (NOT win percentage), will be the first criteria looked at to determine MPSF Tournament seeding (Apr. 22-24 at BYU). Conference win percentage will be the first tiebreaker.
AVCA Coaches Poll (3/8)
1. Hawai'i (15) 239 4-0
2. BYU (1) 222 8-2
3. UCSB 204 4-0
4. Pepperdine 196 7-2
5. Lewis 161 10-2
6. McKendree 149 8-0
7. Grand Canyon 133 2-4
8. UCLA 120 8-3
9. Penn St. 105 12-2
9. Long Beach St. 105 0-0
11. NJIT 79 9-3
12. UC Irvine 64 0-4
13. UC San Diego 51 0-4
14. Ohio State 37 5-6
15. George Mason 21 7-5