Pepperdine Outlasts Pacific in Five Set Battle

Maurice Torres

March 31, 2012

Final Stats

#7 Pepperdine 3, #11 Pacific 2 Box ScoreGet Acrobat Reader

MALIBU, Calif. – Led by 23 kills from Maurice Torres, the #7-ranked Pepperdine men’s volleyball team downed #11 Pacific 3-2 on Saturday evening. Freshman Matt Tarantino also handed in a quality performance with 10 kills and a career-high eight blocks.

Set scores were 20-25, 25-23, 25-16, 27-29, 15-12.

Overall, the Waves (13-11, 8-10 MPSF) hit for a .317 attack percentage, and limited the Tigers to a .294 clip.

Torres (Riverside, Calif./Orange Lutheran HS) led all hitters with 23 kills, in addition to eight digs and four blocks.  Chase Ross (Carlsbad, Calif./Carlsbad HS) added 14 kills, and Scott Rhein (Pleasant View, Tenn./Aaron Academy) turned in a career-best 11 kills.

Tarantino (Van Nuys, Calif./Bishop Alemany HS) earned his 10 kills on a match best .438 success rate.

Florian Gornik and Taylor Hughes led the Tigers with 18 and 17 kills, respectively.

Pacific (7-16, 4-13 MPSF) got off to a strong start and took the first set 25-20. Although Pepperdine took the early lead in set two, the Tigers went on a late 4-0 run to take a 19-17 advantage. The Waves continued to plug away, however, and found themselves back on top 24-22. Hughes tagged down a kill to take away one set point, but Tarantino terminated the next ball to clinch the 25-23 victory.

It was all Pepperdine in the pivotal set three. Up 18-16, the Waves closed out the stanza on a 7-0 run that included back-to-back overpasses that translated into unassisted kills courtesy of Rhein. The freshman outside hitter would finish the set with six kills earned on seven errorless swings.

The Tigers rebounded from the loss and fought their way back into the match during set four, although it did not come easy. In a game that featured 22 tie scores and nine lead changes, Pacific was able to fight off two match points and win the set 29-27.

The Waves halted the Tigers’ run there, and controlled the offensive rhythm of the deciding frame from start to finish. With five Torres kills and three blocks out of Matt Pollock (Orland Park, Ill./Sandburg HS), Pepperdine won 15-12 to secure the match.

Matt West (Seattle, Wash./Shorewood HS) quarterbacked the offense with 56 assists, and helped the defense with eight digs.

Pollock finished the evening with eight kills, six blocks and four digs.

The Waves host their final two matches of the regular season next week, when they welcome UC Irvine on April 5 and UC San Diego on April 7.  Pepperdine will celebrate seniors Doug Astor (Santa Ana, Calif./Foothill HS/Orange Coast CC), Joel Lopata (Deerfield, Ill./Deerfield HS), Brandt Ng (Orinda, Calif./Bentley HS/Saint Mary’s), Pollock and Ross prior to the match against the Tritons.



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