The UCSB men’s volleyball (2-5 overall, 1-3 in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation) team hosts a pair of MPSF opponents this weekend, starting Friday night against Pacific (2-5 overall, 1-3 MPSF).
The #9 Gauchos first welcome the Tigers to the Thunderdome, where Santa Barbara has not exactly provided its visitors with good hospitality. Pacific has not beaten UCSB since 2004, with the Gauchos winning the last three contests. Last year Santa Barbara defeated Pacific twice by the same margin of victory, 3-1. The Tigers are led by junior outside hitter Andreas Baboulidis, averaging 4.15 kills per game and senior outside hitter Brian Adamson at 3.68 kills per game.
On Saturday night UCSB hosts Stanford (2-6 overall, 1-3 MPSF), who will travel to Santa Barbara Friday night following its game in Northridge against the Matadors. Leading the Cardinal is senior opposite Ben Reddy who averages 4.63 kills per game and has logged 10 service aces on the season thus far.
Leading the Gauchos are the usual suspects. 2005 All-American junior opposite Evan Patak has continued his tear, averaging 5.88 kills per game on a .268 hitting clip. In just 25 games, Patak has already picked up 18 service aces.
Backing up Patak is sophomore middle blocker Theo Brunner. Brunner averages 2.16 kills per game at an accurate .383 hitting percentage. Brunner is tied for the team lead with 14, tying teammate sophomore outside blocker Michael Fisher.
Both matches are slated to start at 7:05 p.m. at the Thunderdome.