Men's Volleyball Hosts Key Match-Ups Against UC Irvine and UC San Diego

Kyle Gerrans

March 11, 2013

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MALIBU, Calif. - The #4 Pepperdine men’s volleyball team hosts two key match-ups this week, first hosting #2 UC Irvine on Tuesday, March 12, before welcoming UC San Diego to Firestone Fieldhouse on Friday, March 15.

MATCH 17 - Tuesday (March 12) at Firestone Fieldhouse: #4 Pepperdine (10-6, 9-6 MPSF) vs. #2 UC Irvine (16-4, 13-4 MPSF) at 7 p.m.

MATCH 18 - Friday (March 15) at Firestone Fieldhouse: #4 Pepperdine vs. UC San Diego (6-15, 3-13 MPSF) at 7 p.m.

SIGHT & SOUND - All Pepperdine men’s volleyball home matches are broadcast live and for FREE via WaveCasts. In addition to live broadcasts, WaveCasts also offers a large selection of game highlights, interviews, features and more! GameTracker is also available and offers live scores and statistics. Links to all available coverage can be found on the Pepperdine men’s volleyball schedule page.

TICKETS - Single-game prices for home events are $8 for adults, $5 for students/seniors/children and free to all Pepperdine students, faculty and staff (and their dependents) with a valid Pepperdine ID. An all-sports pass, which provides admission to all Pepperdine home sporting events, with the exception of men’s basketball, is $100. Call the Ticket Office at (866) WAVE-TIX for more information.

MPSF STANDINGS - The Waves, now in the second half of the conference season, sit in fourth place with a 9-6 record ... Of the three teams ahead, Pepperdine has defeated two of them ... The Waves defeated BYU 3-2 at home on Feb. 15 ... The Cougars are a first-place 14-2 in the MPSF ... Pepperdine swept Long Beach State on the road on Feb. 6 ... The 49ers sit in third place with a 12-4 record ... UC Irvine is half a game ahead of LBSU at 13-4 and swept the Waves in the season opener ... The top eight of the league's 13 teams advance to the MPSF Tournament, with the top four teams earning hosting privileges.

LOOKING BACK - The Waves raised the bar in the MPSF, hitting .542 in last week’s 3-0 win over Hope International ... The hitting percentage stands as the highest achieved by any team in the league in 2013 ... Pepperdine’s balanced attack was led by Maurice Torres with 10 kills, followed by Josh Taylor and Scott Rhein with nine apiece ... Six other players logged kills including Parker Kalmbach (7), Leonardo Granato (5), Nikola Antonijevic (3), J.J. Mosolf (1), Kyle Suppes (1) and Beau Vandeweghe (1) ... Matt West distributed 43 assists, for an average of 14.33, and tacked down a career-high four aces.

SOCIAL MEDIA - Fans can follow the Waves on Twitter  @PepperdineMVB and “like” us on Facebook by searching for Pepperdine Athletics or Pepperdine Men’s Volleyball.

LOOKING AHEAD - The Waves’ next three matches are away including USC (March 21), BYU (March 28) and Cal Baptist (March 30).

NOTING THE WAVES - This will be the 1,038th and 1,039th matches in Pepperdine history ... The Waves are 639-331 all time ... In conference play the Waves are 443-254 and 238-137 in MPSF action ... Marv Dunphy boasts a career record of 476-234 ... The Waves are 340-113 when playing inside Firestone Fieldhouse ... The Waves are 208-109 all-time during the month of March.

HOME COURT ADVANTAGE - Pepperdine was a perfect 6-0 when playing inside Firestone Fieldhouse before UCLA snapped that streak on Feb. 23 ... The Waves, 7-1 at home in 2013, typically play very well in Firestone and average 12.93 kills, 12.52 assists, 1.41 aces, 7.62 digs and 2.88 blocks while hitting .355 in Malibu.

UC IRVINE - UC Irvine is 16-4 this season and ranked #2 in the AVCA ... The Anteaters only losses have come to BYU (1-3, 2-3), Cal Baptist (2-3) and USC (0-3) ... Kevin Tille leads the team with 3.96 kills/set, followed by Jeremy Dejno with 3.00 kills/set .... Michael Brinkley picks up 2.58 digs/set ... Colin Mehright averages 1.72 kills/set and 1.36 blocks/set ... The Anteaters have won the last 12 of 13 matches.

UC SAN DIEGO - The Tritons are 6-15 overall and 3-13 in the MPSF ... UCSD’s conference victories include USC (3-0, Cal Baptist (3-2) and UC Santa Barbara (3-0) ... UC San Diego is trying to snap a four-match loss streak ... Carl Eberts paces the offense with 3.18 kills/set ... He also collects 1.58 digs/set ... Cheyne Hayes nails down 2.48 kills/set.

SERIES SCORE - Pepperdine opened the 2013 season at UC Irvine on Jan. 8 and dropped a 3-0 decision ... The last time the Waves officially beat UCI was during the 2007 season ... The Anteaters have won the last eight-consecutive matches vs. Pepperdine, and have won 11 of the last 12 meetings ... Pepperdine is officially 47-19 all-time vs. UCI ... Pepperdine is officially 36-3 all-time vs. UC San Diego ... The Waves are on a three-match win streak vs. UCSD ... The Tritons have beat Pepperdine just three times in program history dating back to 1982 ... UCSD swept the two-match series in 2010 and tallied another win in 2011.

MPSF LEADERS - Matt West ranks second in the MPSF with 11.30 assists/set and ranks seventh in aces (0.37) ... Parker Kalmbach ranks fifth in the league with a 1.34 blocks/set average and ranks eighth with a .417 hitting percentage ... Maurice Torres ranks fourth in kills (4.13), third in points (4.91) and 12th in aces (0.30) ... Nikola Antonijevic averages 1.05 blocks/set to rank 12th.

MPSF TEAM STATS - As a team, the Waves rank second in the league in hitting percentage (.320) and third in assists (12.27) ... Pepperdine also ranks tied for first in blocks (2.91), fourth in kills (12.85), ninth in opponent hitting percentage (.270), sixth in service aces (1.18) and 12th in digs (7.35).

NCAA RANKS - In the last NCAA rankings release (March 4), Matt West’s 11.14 assists/set ranked third in the NCAA ... Parker Kalmbach ranked eighth the NCAA in blocks (1.34) followed by Nikola Antonijevic in 24th (1.05) ... Maurice Torres ranked fourth in kills (4.21) ... As a team, Pepperdine ranked third in the country in blocks (2.98), third in hitting percentage (.313) and sixth in assists (12.00).

RANKINGS - Pepperdine is currently listed at #4 in the AVCA Coaches’ Top-15 Poll.

TORRES - Maurice Torres, the Waves’ kills leader the past three seasons, enters his senior campaign with high expectations ... Torres leads this team this year with 4.13 kills/set ... He has surpassed double digit kill totals in all but one match this season including five 20+ kill performances ... He registered a season-high 23 kills against BYU (Feb. 15) ... He was later named MPSF Player of the Week on Feb. 18 for his efforts ... Versus Pacific (Jan. 18), he set a new career-record in hitting percentage after tagging down 11 kills while hitting .714 ... Against USC (Feb. 1) he reached the 1,300 kills and 500 digs plateau ... Torres was an AVCA All-American second team selection in 2012 and made the first team in the All-MPSF conference awards.

1,300 K/500 D - With his first of 15 kills and last of nine digs vs. USC (Feb. 1), Maurice Torres reached the 1,300 kills and 500 digs career milestones ... He is just one of seven Waves to have ever reached both plateaus ... Other former players to have achieved the feat include Scott Wong (1,700 k/807 d), George Roumain (2,394 k/620 d), Paul Carroll (2,101 k/624 d), Matt Rigg (1,539 k/692 d), Fred Winters (1,525 k/602 d) and Sean Rooney (2,007 k/629 d).

WEST - Matt West is in his second year managing the Waves’ offense ... West was an All-MPSF honorable mention as a freshman and ranked second in the NCAA and the league with 11.38 assists/set ... West, who made use of a float serve last season, has transitioned to a tough jump serve and the change has paid dividends ... He currently leads Pepperdine with 22 service aces and ranks seventh in the conference with a 0.37 aces/set average ... He tallied a career-best four aces vs. Hope International (March 8) ... USC (Feb. 1) was only able to sideout at a 48-percent rate when West was serving ... He ranks second the league and ranks third in the NCAA with 11.30 assists/set in 2013.

DOUBLE-DOUBLE - Josh Taylor recorded his first-ever double-double on Sunday, Jan. 20 vs. Stanford ... The sophomore was credited with 13 kills and a career-best 11 digs ... It was the first kills-digs double-double by any Wave in 2013 ... Maurice Torres registered two kills-digs double doubles this season, first against Cal Baptist (Feb. 13), and again versus BYU (Feb. 15) ... Against the Cougars, Torres earned his double-double with season highs in kills (23) and digs (12) .. Parker Kalmbach earned his first double-double on Friday, Feb. 8 at Cal State Northridge after recording a career-high 13 kills and 10 blocks.

DON’T CALL IT A COMEBACK - Parker Kalmbach, who missed all of 2012 recovering from major back surgery, is back in 2013 and has made an immediate impact ... After serving as an outside hitter in 2011, Kalmbach now starts in the middle ... He ranks third in the MPSF with a 1.34 blocks/set average ... Delivered a phenomenal 10-block performance against UC San Diego on Jan. 12 and again at Cal State Northridge on Feb. 8 ... He also pounds down 1.90 kills/set.

ANTONIJEVIC - Nikola Antonijevic is equally as impressive as Kalmbach in the middle ... The sophomore provides 1.08 blocks/set for the defense and 1.00 kills/set on the offensive end.

ON THE OUTSIDE - Josh Taylor and Kyle Gerrans opened 2013 as the two starting outside hitters ... With Gerrans’ on the disabled list, Scott Rhein has taken over his spot on the outside ... Taylor, who ranked second behind Torres in 2012 with 3.52 kills/set, currently averages 3.05 kills/set as a sophomore ... Rhein came off the bench against the Cougars and tallied a then-season high nine kills and five blocks ... He has since extended his season-best to 13 kills (Pacific, March 1) ... Rhein has averaged 2.32 kills/set since Feb. 15 and 1.56 kills/set on the season.

CHECK THE RECORD - In Pepperdine’s career record book, Maurice Torres has made his mark in several categories ... He ranks eighth in career kills with 1,465 ... His 117 service aces rank eighth ... Matt West’s assist total of 2,021 ranks seventh all-time.

Marv Dunphy - Now in his 30th season as head coach of the Waves, Marv Dunphy has time and again proven himself to be one of the top teachers in the sport. He has directed Pepperdine to four NCAA championships, each in a different decade (1978, 1985, 1992, 2005). He was the 2005 National Coach of the Year and is a three-time MPSF Coach of the Year. He entered the 2013 season with a career record of 532-229* (.699). Dunphy has long been involved with USA Volleyball, having been part of the coaching staff at six Olympics, including head coach of the 1988 team and consultant coach for the 2008 squad, both of which won gold. He has been inducted into the Volleyball Hall of Fame (1994), AVCA Hall of Fame (2009) and the Pepperdine Athletics Hall of Fame (2010).

PRESEASON MPSF POLL - With 113 points, the Waves were picked to finished third in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation in a preseason vote of the league’s 13 coaches. UC Irvine tallied the most points with 143, closely followed by BYU with 134.

2012 POSTSEASON AWARDS - Maurice Torres earned a spot on the All-MPSF first team roster ... Matt Pollock and Matt West were named to the honorable mention team ... West, Matt Tarantino and Josh Taylor accounted for three of the six spots on the all-freshman list ... Torres was also named a second team All-American by both the AVCA and Volleyball Magazine.

VOLLEYBALL HISTORY - Pepperdine has won five NCAA men’s volleyball championships, second only to UCLA. The Waves have won the MPSF Tournament three times and have won or shared nine regular-season conference titles. Pepperdine has won either an MPSF regular-season or tournament title in seven of the last 13 seasons. The Waves have finished in the top six in the final AVCA poll in each of the last 13 seasons. Pepperdine student-athletes have won national player of the year honors eight times and All-American accolades 76 times. A Pepperdine alum has competed for the U.S. at the Olympics every time since 1984 (Sean Rooney won gold in 2008).

ABOUT PEPPERDINE - Pepperdine boasts a one-of-a-kind athletic department with unprecedented success for a school of its size. The Waves have won NCAA Division I championships in five different men’s sports - one of just 16 schools to have accomplished this feat - and nine overall. Of this elite group, Pepperdine has the smallest enrollment and is the only school not in a major conference. Located in scenic Malibu, Calif., the university overlooks the Pacific Ocean and its campus and athletic facilities are regularly voted among the nation’s most beautiful. Pepperdine, which is affiliated with the Church of Christ, ranks #54 overall on U.S. News and World Report’s list of America’s best colleges.



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