The UCLA men's volleyball team has been walking the five set tightrope all season. It caught up with them against Hawaii yesterday. In the final match of the Outrigger Invitational in Honolulu, the Bruins fell to the hosts, 20-25, 25-23, 20-25, 26-24 and 16-14. The #5 Bruins are now 5-2 and next face #6 Long Beach State on Tuesday.
The Bruins were uncharacteristically sloppy against Hawaii, committing 25 attack errors and 9 serve reception errors. For a team that has struggled all year to put away opponents, that level of sloppiness is unaffordable. Robart Page and Gonzalo Quiroga led the Bruins attack with 18 and 15 kills respectively, but their attack percentages were well below their season averages. Tournament Most Outstanding Player Dane Worley chipped in with 12 kills.
The Bruins have very little time to regroup and clean up their play. Coach Speraw's squad faces a difficult stretch of games in the next three weeks, facing Long Beach State (#6), UCSB (#9), Stanford (#3), and Pacific (#15) before squaring off against UCI (#1). By the end of the month, we'll have a better idea of where this team is headed.