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MVB Hits the Road

Feb 8, 2022

No. 2 Bruins Battle Big West Foes On Road — UCLA (6-1), ranked No. 2 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) poll, will play on the road against No. 14 UC San Diego (3-4) on Wednesday and No. 1 Long Beach State (6-1) on Friday, both teams hail from the Big West Conference. These are the first meetings with each school since the 2020 season. The Bruins lost in their last trip to San Diego (0-3) and then defeated the Tritons (3-1) in the last match of the 2020 season. UCLA defeated the Beach in its last journey to the Pryamid (3-1) before Long Beach returned the favor in Westwood (2-3) in a five-set decision. The Bruins last knocked off the nation's top-ranked squad a year ago with a 3-1 win at then No. 1 BYU. Prior to that victory over the Cougars, the Bruins had last taken down a top-ranked opponent in a 2014 match against Stanford. UCLA has been ranked as high as No. 2 in the AVCA poll in five of the last six seasons (not 2021). The Bruins were last ranked No. 1 in 2016 over a four-week period.

Feb. 9 - at UC San Diego - 7 p.m.
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Feb. 11 - at Long Beach State - 7 p.m.
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LAST WEEK -- UCLA captured a pair of hard-fought wins over UC Irvine last week, winning in five sets in Westwood (25-23, 23-25, 25-14, 16-25, 15-11) and in four in the Bren Center (21-25, 25-14, 25-22, 26-24). The Bruins were led by Ido David (20k at home/19k at UCI) and Grant Sloane (16k at UCI). UCLA generated a season-best .416 hitting percentage at Irvine. Miles Partain was credited with a career-best 52 set assists in the home victory. Guy Genis (6), Partain (4), Sloane (3) and Ethan Champlin (3) each met or exceeded their season-best totals for block assists in the away win. Genis added a season-best 13 kills in the home win. 

AWARDS -- Ido David was selected as the AVCA's Div. I-II National Player of the Week and Off the Block National Freshman of the Week for his efforts in the wins over UC Irvine. David was also chosen as the Molten/MPSF Offensive Player of the Week. Middle blocker Guy Genis was the MPSF's Defensive Player of the Week after he totaled 19 kills while hitting at a .643 percentage for the week.

NCAA RANKINGS -- Entering the week the Bruins are rated in the Top 10 nationally in kills (2nd-13.3) and set assists (2nd-12.3). Merrick McHenry rates 2nd in hitting % (.482) while Miles Partain ranks 9th in the nation in set assists per frame at 9.70.

PLAYER NOTES --  Merrick McHenry had a season-high 13 kills in win at UC Irvine ... he was errorless on 22 swings against Ohio State and Penn State while producing 12 kills ... honorable mention AVCA All-America pick and a second-team All-MPSF selection last season while rating 12th in the NCAA with a .423 hitting % and 18th nationally with a 1.02 blocks per set mark ... Ido David had a combined 39 kills and hit .424 in wins over UC Irvine ... Had 17 kills and hit .344 the week before against CSUN and Lewis ... saw first action against Ohio State and led the team with 14 kills ... Guy Genis leads the MPSF with a .592 hitting percentage ... was named Off the Block's Middle Attacker All-American for the month of January ... produced 15 kills on 21 swings while hitting .714 in matches against OSU and PSU ... Grant Sloane posted a season-best 16 kills in win at UC Irvine ... compiled a 10-kill, 2-block, 2-ace debut match v. CSUN ... Cole Ketrzynski had 8 kills in Pauley win over UCI while hitting .636 ... had a season-high 11 kills in win over Ohio State ... an honorable mention AVCA All-America selection and a first-team All-MPSF pick in 2021 and ranked among the nation's best last season in kills per set (12th), points per set (8th), hitting% (.345) and aces per set (7th) ... had 2021 best of 24 kills vs. Concordia ... Cole Pender had season-high 11 digs at UCI ... team-high honors in digs with 7 against both Penn State and CSUN ... saw action in 21 matches last season and recorded a .961 serve reception mark on 463 attempts ... Ethan Champlin had a combined 18 kills and 4 blocks in the two wins over UCI ... tied his career-high with 18 kills (also last year vs. Stanford) against Penn State ... Freshman All-America selection by in 2021 ... Miles Partain had a career-best three service aces vs. UCI and CSUN ... team hit over .400 in both wins over UCI ... named Molten/MPSF Defensive POW (Jan. 24) after 18 digs, a block solo and five block assists in wins over the Big Ten schools ... played in seven matches in 2021 as a back-up setter ... he was named's 2021 AVP Best Defensive Player on the beach ... Kevin Kobrine had 12 kills (.385), 6 digs, 5 blocks in win over Penn State ... played in 16 matches in 2021 and finished the season strong with double-digit kills in five of the last six contests ...  Alex Knight had a season-high 9 kills against Lewis ... added 8 kills in win over Penn State to go with 7 digs ... saw action in 11 matches in 2021 with four starts and registered a season-high 15 kills against Concordia, Irvine.