LA JOLLA, Calif. - No. 15 UCSD is looking to snap its six-match losing skid and the Tritons are heading to Los Angeles to face the No. 1 team in the nation this week.
Match No. 21
No. 15 UCSD (6-14, 3-11 MPSF) at No. 1 USC (21-1, 21-1 MPSF)
Friday, Mar. 11 • 7 p.m.
Galen Center • Los Angeles, Calif.
Match No. 22
No. 15 UCSD at No. 11 Pepperdine (6-9, 4-9 MPSF)
Saturday, Mar. 12 • 7 p.m.
Firestone Fieldhouse • Malibu, Calif.
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Here's a week-by-week look at UCSD in the 2011 AVCA poll:
UCSD set an all-time attendance record on Saturday, Mar. 5th as 1,012 fans filed into RIMAC Arena to see the No. 13 Tritons take on third-ranked Stanford. The previous record for attendance at a Triton volleyball match was 906, set in 2009 with UCLA in the house.
UCSD and USC met in La Jolla on Jan. 21 with the Trojans sweeping by scores of 25-12, 25-23 and 25-17. USC hit .416 to UCSD's .184 and swung at .579 in the opening set and .550 in the third set. Murphy Troy and Tony Ciarelli had 15 and 11 kills, respectively, while Riley McKibbin and Henry Cassiday each had seven digs. UCSD was led by Carl Eberts' nine kills. Phil Bannan had a team-high six digs and Calvin Ross hit .417 from the middle with six kills and just one error in 12 attacks.
The Tritons and Waves played at RIMAC Arena on Feb. 4 with Pepperdine coming away with a 3-1 victory. Scores were 25-22, 18-25, 25-23 and 25-22. Aside from the score, it was a big night for UCSD as three career records were broken. Setter Phil Bannan became UCSD's all-time leader in assists and aces while middle blocker Calvin Ross broke the school's career blocks record. Pepperdine's Maurice Torres had a match-high 20 kills and added an ace, seven digs and five blocks as the Waves out-blocked the Tritons 11.5 to 4. Matt Pollock accounted for six blocks. Carl Eberts put down 15 kills and Mike Sierks had a career-best 14 digs for UCSD. The Triton middles played a solid match as Ross and Brady each had seven kills. Ross posted a .667 attack percentage and Brady swung at .545
TRITONS IN THE MPSF
Hitting Percentage: 4th, Sebastian Brady, .427
Aces: 2nd, Phil Bannan, .47/set
Team Hitting Percentage: 10th, .248
Opponent Hitting Percentage: 7th, .298
Team Kills: 9th, 12.23/set
Team Assists: 8th, 11.56/set
Team Aces: 4th, 1.11/set
Team Digs: 8th, 7.80/set
Team Blocks: 12th, 2.04/set
TRITONS IN THE NATIONAL STAT RANKINGS
Assists: 25th, Phil Bannan, 9.42/set
Aces: 6th, Phil Bannan, .47/set
Digs: 28th, Chase Frishman, 1.79/set
Team Kills: 18th, 12.23/set
Team Assists: 17th, 11.56/set
Team Aces: 19th, 1.11/set
THE BIG CARL
Outside hitter Carl Eberts continues to put up big numbers. He's recorded double-digit kill totals in 11 of his last 13 matches, including a career-high 17 kills at No. 2 BYU. He owns five of the top 10 kill performances by the Tritons this season. A year ago, Eberts finished his 2010 season with 89 kills over 52 sets, 1.71 kills per set. This season, he's got 221 kills in 74 sets, good for a 2.99 kills per set average. Eberts leads the team in total kills, kills per set, attack attempts, total digs, total points and points per set.
Junior opposite Shane Veiga has drastically improved his play in 2011. He entered the season with a total of 22 career kills - 12 in 2010 and 10 in 2008. He currently has 143 kills this season, second most on the team. Veiga is also second in points per set with an average of 3.31. He's posted 10 or more kills in nine matches. In the first match of the season, he set a new career-high with 14 kills vs. UCLA. That same day, he re-set the mark with 19 kills against Cal State Northridge.
LOSING STREAK WORST SINCE 2007
UCSD's current six-match losing streak is its longest since 2007 when the Tritons lost their final 13 matches of the season. UCSD's last win came on Feb. 11 when it upset No. 4 Stanford at Maples Pavilion.
RECORDS ARE MADE TO BE BROKEN. AND BROKEN. AND BROKEN.
When UCSD and Pepperdine met in La Jolla on Feb. 4, the Waves took a 3-1 win but two Tritons ended up breaking career records. Senior setter Phil Bannan became UCSD's all-time leader in assists and service aces, while senior middle blocker Calvin Ross finished the match as the school's career leader in blocks.
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