Big Offensive Leads #9 Waves to 3-1 Win at Cal Baptist
The Waves hit for a .429 success rate with 53 kills and only 11 errors on 98 swings throughout four sets.
RIVERSIDE, Calif.: – The 9th-ranked Pepperdine men’s volleyball team posted a strong offensive output to propel the Waves to a 3-1 victory at Van Dyne Gym against Cal Baptist this Thursday night. Despite falling 25-21 in the first set, the Waves rallied back with 25-19, 25-22 and 25-21 set scores to earn the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation victory.
Pepperdine (6-4, 4-3 MPSF) amassed a .429 hitting percentage over Cal Baptist (3-10, 1-8 MPSF), producing 53 kills with only 11 errors on 98 swings and allowing 57 kills with 22 errors on 123 attempts from the opposition. The Waves out-blocked the Lancers with 9.5 team blocks to 7.0, but the home team picked up five aces compared to Pepperdine’s three. The Waves also added 37 digs against the Lancers 28-dig performance.
Junior Colby Harriman (Rochester, N.Y./McQuaid Jesuit HS) led the Waves with a season-high 16 kills on a .520 success rate. He also tabbed six digs, one ace and two blocks for the team.
Senior Joshua Stewart (San Jose, Calif./Bellarmine College Prep/Pacific) maintained his “Josh-of-all-trades” attitude with a team-high 44 assists, along with four kills to tie his career-best on a .571 output. He added a team-best five blocks including one solo rejection and four digs.
Redshirt-sophomore David Wieczorek (Chicago, Ill./Loyola Academy) also hit for double-figure kills with 15 on a .265 attacking percentage. Senior Mitchell Penning (St. Louis, Mo./Westminster Christian Academy) was also big all-around, tallying a 7-0-8 attack effort for a career-best .875 hitting percentage. He also posted an ace and four blocks, including one solo for the Waves.
Junior libero Weston Barnes (Laguna Beach, Calif./Laguna Beach HS/George Mason) tabbed 14-digs for the third-consecutive match. Sophomore Max Chamberlain (Burbank, Calif./John Burroughs HS) added six kills and four blocks and freshman Noah Dyer (San Clemente, Calif./Saddleback Valley Christian HS) was good for five kills on a .308 output and six digs.
The Waves and Lancers each came out strong in the first set, collecting a 10-10 tie before the opposition started pulling ahead en route to a 17-12 advantage. Pepperdine stayed tough, however, battling back to a two-point deficit on a forced attack error by CBU at the 20-22 mark. The home team had the momentum, though, and closed the set 25-21 to pull ahead early. Cal Baptist posted a .636 hitting percentage, compared to the Waves’ .364 output in the first set.
Pepperdine rallied back strong in the second set, posting a .591 offensive success rate throughout, while allowing CBU only a .121. The Waves were fueled out of the break, amassing a 7-4 lead with an ace by Harriman and a pair of kills by a collective Harriman and Wieczorek. The Lancers put up a 5-0 run to go up by two, but the Waves buckled down once again to take a 15-11 lead with a smash from Wieczorek and back-to-back rejections from Stewart and Penning. With the advantage driving Pepperdine, the Waves continued to create attack opportunities and quickly posted a 25-19 set victory with the help of a Chamberlain, Wieczorek block to tie the match.
Pepperdine was feeling strong in the third set as well, tallying an 8-4 lead to start things off, helped by a Wieczorek smash and a Stewart solo rejection. The Lancers tied the set at the 8-8 mark, but the Waves worked ahead yet again with a 6-4 run. Pepperdine remained ahead of Cal Baptist throughout the rest of the set, with the opposition coming within two-points at the 23-21 mark before kills from Wieczorek and Stewart sealed the deal and put the Waves up 2-1 on the night.
With the match on the line, the Lancers worked ahead out of the fourth-set starting gate, collecting an 8-5 lead early. The teams started exchanging points at the time, but CBU seemed to remain a step ahead, amassing 14-10 and 16-12 advantages before the Waves would start to roll back into the set. Starting with a Wieczorek kill and ending with a Harriman smash, Pepperdine produced a 6-2 run to tie the set at 18’s. Each side continued to put points on the board, until a 20-20 score when a kill from Wieczorek and an ace by Penning put the Waves ahead 22-20, forcing a Cal Baptist timeout. The opposition was able to put one more point on the board, but a triple block including Wieczorek, Harriman and Chamberlain closed the match with the 25-21 set win and the four-set overall victory.
Next up, Pepperdine remains on the road, heading across town to challenge USC in the Galen Center on Saturday, February 18 at 7 p.m. Follow Pepperdine @PeppVolleyball on Twitter and Facebook for immediate updates and head to PepperdineWaves.com for recaps, results and more.