The University of Hawai'i men's volleyball team clinched homecourt in next week's Mountain Pacific Sports Federation quarterfinal round by virtue of a four-set win over No. 6 UCLA Friday at the Wooden Center. Set scores were 26-28, 25-23, 25-21, 25-18.
The win guarantees the Rainbow Warriors (23-4, 13-4 MPSF) the No. 3 seed in next week's tournament. UH will host a quarterfinal match (Saturday, April 15) for the second time in three seasons and third time under head coach Charlie Wade.
The teams play again Saturday at 7:00 p.m. PT to close out the regular season.
Senior outside hitter Kupono Fey led the Warriors with 13 kills, hitting .250, along with four digs and three blocks. The Honolulu native tallied seven kills in seven attempts during UH's pivotal third set win. Freshman Rado Parapunov sparked the Warriors off the bench in place of Stijn van Tilburg and finished with nine kills, four digs, and two blocks.
At least six different Warriors posted six kills or more including middle blocker Hendrik Mol who had seven kills without an error in 11 attempts (.636) along with four blocks. Freshman middle Patrick Gasman added six kills (.500) and a team-high five stuffs.
Jake Arnitz had a match-high 20 kills (.395) for the Bruins (17-8, 10-7), who saw their seven-match win streak come to an end.
UH hit .304 as a team compared to .244 for UCLA. The Warriors also recorded five aces, two each by Mol and Brett Rosenmeier, and 10 team blocks.
UCLA led 8-5 early in Set 1 but the Warriors quickly responded with six straight for their own three-point lead. UH extended its lead to 20-16 after a pair of Fey-Mol double blocks. The Bruins rallied back and erased two set points to tie it at 24. UCLA erased another set point and scored four of the final five points to steal the set 28-26, stuffing van Tilburg for the set winner.
The teams battled back and forth in Set 2. Parapunov ignited a three-point spurt for a 17-14 lead. The Bruins tied it up and the teams seesawed until Rosenmeier was ruled in the net, putting UCLA on top 23-22. The Warriors then scored the final three points including Gasman's solo roof to end it. Parapunov finished with six kills and UH totaled four blocks in the 25-23 win.
Parapunov's serving helped put UH on top 7-4 in Set 3. The Warriors extended their lead to lead to 17-12 after a 5-2 spurt. Fey was unstoppable in the set with seven kills as UH built a 22-16 lead. The Bruins erased two set points and looked to extend the set but UCLA setter Micah Ma'a was ruled in the net on his overpass kill attempt giving Hawai'i the 25-21 win.
UH fell behind 6-3 to start Set 4 but stormed back to take an 18-13 lead after scoring seven unanswered with Rosenmeier at the service line. The Warriors scored seven of the final 10 points to take the match.
Hawaii Athletics Release
Hawaii News Now
420 Waiakamilo Road, Suite 205
Honolulu, HI 96817
Main (808) 847-3246
News (808) 847-1112