LA JOLLA, Calif. -
UC San Diego senior setter Phil Bannan
became the school's all-time leader in career assists Friday as the 12th ranked Tritons fell, 3-1, vs. No. 11 Pepperdine in MPSF men's volleyball action at RIMAC Arena.
UCSD (5-7, 2-4 MPSF) had won the last two meetings between the teams dating back to 2010, but the trifecta was stifled as Pepperdine (3-5, 1-5 MPSF) hit a solid .361 and put up a strong block to get its first league win of the season.
Scores of the match were 25-22, 18-25, 25-23 and 25-22.
Bannan, a Newport Beach native, needed just five assists coming into the night to take over the school record. He finished with 30 helpers, giving him 3,893 over his three-plus seasons in La Jolla. The previous record was held by Brooks Dierdorff, who amassed 3,867 between 2004 and 2007.
The history making play occurred well into the first set. With the Waves leading 18-14, Bannan served up an ace to get the Tritons within three. Pepperdine called a timeout before Bannan served up another tough to handle blast. The reception was shanked and it looked like it would be another ace, but a Pepperdine player hustled to the back corner of the arena to save the ball, almost becoming one with the UCSD Band's drum kit. On the free ball, Bannan set outside hitter Carl Eberts, who put the ball away for a kill, giving Bannan his fifth assist of the night and the record.
"It feels great to have the record," said Bannan, who also added four kills, four digs, three aces and three blocks. "But, I couldn't have done it without all of the great teammates I've had over the last four years."
Eberts finished with a team high 15 kills and 16 points while also collecting eight digs. Outside hitter Joel Davidson followed with nine kills. The Tritons got a nice effort from their middles as Sebastian Brady and Calvin Ross each had seven kills with Ross hitting .667 and Brady swinging at .545 for the night. Mike Sierks led all players with a career high 14 digs.
Pepperdine got a match best 20 kills from Maurice Torres and another 11 out of Cory Riecks. Matt Pollock had six blocks and Torres had five as the Waves out-blocked the Tritons 11.5 to 4. Torres and Mike McMahon each had seven digs.
Pepperdine struggled from the service line, committing 20 errors.
UCSD picked up its first ever win over Pepperdine in 2010. In fact, the Tritons swept the season series with two upsets - a 3-1 victory in Malibu and a five set win in La Jolla to close out the season.
Tonight's contest ended a five match home stand for UCSD. The team hits the road for a pair of MPSF tilts at Pacific (Feb. 10) and Stanford (Feb. 11).
- ucsdtritons.com -