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Waves Win in Five

Apr 16, 2022

MALIBU, Calif. – In its final regular season match, No. 12 Stanford came up short in a five-set thriller at No. 8 Pepperdine, 21-25, 21-25, 25-13, 25-23, 11-15, Saturday, at Firestone Fieldhouse.

Stanford (12-13, 4-8 MPSF) finishes fifth in the MPSF regular season standings. The Cardinal will face No. 4 seed Grand Canyon in the first round of the conference tournament on Wednesday at 8 p.m. at UCLA.

Stanford out hit Pepperdine (16-9, 7-5) .369 to .289 – the third time this season it has out hit an opponent in a loss. The Cardinal registered 8.0 blocks and five aces, while the Waves had 6.0 and four, respectively.

Junior Will Rottman led all players with 21 kills on .375 hitting to go with five digs, two aces and three blocks. The outside hitter now has five 20-plus kill performances on the season.

After trailing 0-2, Stanford came alive in the third, avoiding the sweep. The Cardinal led wire-to-wire in the set, hitting .632 with 12 kills on 19 errorless swings. Rottman had seven kills on 10 attempts with no errors in the third.

Outside hitter Kevin Lamp posted 12 kills on a .458 attack percentage, two digs and a pair of aces. Opposite Luke Turner added 10 kills, five digs and two blocks.

Setter Nathan Lietzke controlled the offense with 47 assists and tallied eight digs and two blocks. Libero Justin Lui had a team-high nine digs to go with four assists.

Stanford's middle blockers Ethan Hill and Nathaniel Gates were efficient, combining for 12 kills on 21 swings with no errors. Hill hit .600 and had a match-best five blocks, while Gates posted a .545 hitting percentage and had two blocks, two digs and an ace.

Pepperdine, which secured the No. 3 seed for the MPSF Tournament, was led by Spencer Wickens's 19 kills on .412 hitting. Alex Gettinger added 14 kills, seven digs and four assists for the Waves, while libero Trey Cole had a match-high 13 digs.