Sixth-ranked UC Irvine swept 25-21, 25-18, 25-18 on senior night at the Bren Center Saturday.
The Anteaters improve to 18-10 overall and 15-9 in the MPSF. UCI ends the regular season tied with UCLA and Long Beach State for fifth place, but due to a tiebreaker will be the sixth seed for the MPSF Tournament. UCI will travel to third-seeded Stanford Saturday for a quarterfinal match.
Seniors shined on their final regular season home match led by outside hitter Jeremy Dejno with 12 kills and two aces. Senior outside hitter Connor Hughes recorded eight kills and five digs, while senior middle blocker Scott Kevorken added six kills and two block assists and senior middle blocker Collin Mehring was errorless, hitting .833 on five kills in six attempts. Junior Zack La Cavera recorded nine kills, while freshman Tamir Hershko had five kills. Junior Roberto Frazzoni totaled 36 set assists and five digs, while junior libero Michael Brinkley collected a match-best 15 digs.
EL CAJON — Brandon Sandoval went three for three and pitcher Clayton Voechting pitched six strong innings to help visiting Vanguard University win the second game, 5-1, to salvage a Golden State Athletic Conference split with San Diego Christian on Saturday.
Voechting allowed two hits and one run to improve to 6-4 in Game 2, after the No. 6-ranked Hawks won the opener, 5-3.
Taylor McKnight, Thomas Mobley and Nick Rodda also had two hits apiece for No. 14-ranked Vanguard (27-16, 18-12 in conference), which fell into a tie for third place with Concordia with six conference games remaining.
San Diego Christian (34-12, 21-8) is in first place, followed by The Master's (21-12 in GSAC play).
Rodda, Sandoval, Mobley and John Schwer had two hits for the Lions in Game 1.
Long Beach State 5, UC Irvine 2
LONG BEACH — The visiting Anteaters were overpowered in the showdown for first place in the Big West Conference on Saturday.
Sarah Gong and Franziska Goettsching, playing at No. 1 and No. 3 singles, respectively, earned points for the Anteaters (14-6, 6-1), who fall one match behind the 49ers (16-2, 7-0), who will be the top seed in the Big West Tournament.
UCI closes the regular season against UC Riverside on Thursday.