LONG BEACH, Calif. – The No. 6 University of Hawai’i men’s volleyball team defeated No. 10 Long Beach State, 25-22, 24-26, 25-14, 25-22, Friday night, winning its first match at Walter Pyramid since 2011. The Rainbow Warriors extend their conference winning streak to five-straight matches with a 12-3, 9-2 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation record.
UH was led by senior Taylor Averill, who tallied 14 kills hitting at .545 (14-2-22), netting his 10th match with double-digit kills this season. The middle-blocker also matched his season-high nine blocks while Davis Holt and Jennings Franciskovic also reached for season-highs with eight and six blocks, respectively. Additionally, Averill and Hendrik Mol added three service aces apiece while libero Kolby Kanetake recorded his 10th match with double-digit digs (10) for the ‘Bows defense.
Meanwhile, LBSU (8-7, 5-7 MPSF) was led by junior Dan Glamack, who hit a team-high 13 kills, and added four digs and two service aces.
The Warriors had a rocky start in Set 1, as LBSU set off to a commanding 14-9 lead. However, Holt and Franciskovic’s double-block finally tied it 14-14 midway through, topping off an explosive five-point run by the ‘Bows. UH went on to take a 16-15 lead after another roof by Holt and Sedore, but the Warriors didn’t break away until the Beach committed back-to-back hitting errors to kick-off UH’s final 4-1 run. In the end, LBSU couldn’t hold up, giving the set away 25-22 with a service error.
After trailing right behind the 49ers for most of Set 2, the Rainbow Warriors rallied back again all the way for the lead at set point, 24-22. However, one error led to the next for UH, as LBSU surged back with a 4-0 advantage to overtake the ‘Bows for the win, 26-24.
Set off by back-to-back errors by LBSU, the ‘Bows broke away with an unstoppable 8-1 run for a 15-6 lead in Set 3. The 49ers made several attempts to come back, but UH dominated the rest of the set, LBSU giving away the Warriors’ last two points with service errors, UH conquering the set, 25-14.
After several point-for-point rallies in Set 4, the Rainbow Warriors finally cemented a comfortable 22-16 lead after pulling off a 10-3 run with setter Alex Jones stepping onto the court for a staggering 12 assists in the set. The 49ers surged back in the final stretch with a 6-1 run to cut the ‘Bows lead down to just one point, but buckled under pressure with a service error to give UH the victory, 25-22.
UH will conclude the two-match series against No. 10 Long Beach State, Saturday night at Walter Pyramid at 7:00 p.m. PT.