No. 3 Pepperdine Rallies to Defeat No. 6 Long Beach State


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LONG BEACH, Calif. - Senior opposite Paul Carroll led the #3 Pepperdine men's volleyball team with 31 kills and 13 digs on .467 (31-3-60) hitting en route to a thrilling 21-30, 24-30, 32-30, 30-26, 15-12 come-from-behind victory Friday evening on the road against #6 Long Beach State. The Waves rallied together after dropping the first two games and inched out a win on their second game point of game three before claiming the match in the fifth game.

Sophomore setter Kasey Crider (Granite Bay, Calif./Granite Bay HS) directed the Wave attack with 67 assists. Also joining Carroll in double-digit kills was sophomore outside hitter Cory Riecks (Auburn, Calif. /Placer HS) with 18 kills and junior middle blocker Rodnei Santos (Sao Paulo, Brazil /BYU) with 10 kills accompanied by 10 block assists.

Once again the Waves dominated in the block department as Pepperdine outblocked LBSU 13.5-4.5

The Waves have now defeated the 49ers four of the last five meetings and are currently 43-35 all time against LBSU. The win also pushes Pepperdine to 11-2 overall and 10-2 in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation play while LBSU falls to 8-7 and 7-5 in MPSF play.

The 49ers had five players with double-digit kills and were led by Dean Bittner who led all scorers with 33 kills and Mike Klipsch who added 74 assists.

The Waves came out in game one with an early 10-6 lead due in part from a 4-0 Pepperdine run which featured a block from Crider and Santos and a pair of kills from Riecks and a kill from Carroll (Forster, Australia/Great Lakes College). However, LBSU responded with a 7-0 run to claim their first lead of the game at 13-10. After the Waves pushed the game back within two at 14-12, the 49ers went on a 4-0 run to push their lead to 18-12. Pepperdine would get no closer than five points before Bittner closed the game with a kill at 30-21.

In game two LBSU jumped out to an early 8-3 lead in part from an early 3-0 run. The teams then alternated points as the 49ers led 11-6. Then it was time for the Waves to make a run as Carroll had a block and an ace and Riecks added a kill during a 5-1 run to push within one point at 12-11. Once again the 49ers responded with two separate 3-0 runs en route to a 20-15 lead. The teams then traded points back-and-forth until a kill by Josh Riley gave LBSU a 30-24 win.

Needing the win to survive, Riecks came out swinging in game three as he accounted for the first three Wave kills on the way to an early 4-1 Pepperdine lead. Down 9-5, LBSU capitalized on a pair of Bittner kills and Pepperdine errors to go on a 4-0 run and tie the game. However, Carroll and the Waves instantly responded with their own 6-2 run which featured three Carroll kills and a Crider ace to extend a 15-11 lead. Down 22-17, the 49ers responded with two 3-0 runs during a larger 9-4 run to tie the game at 26. Both teams would continue to battle as they tied at 28, 29 and 30 before a Riecks kill followed by Carroll's eleventh kill of the game gave the Waves a 32-30 win on their second game point.

After an early tie at 3-3, LBSU took a 7-3 lead after a 4-0 run. Both teams then continued to battle back-and-forth as they alternated points to a 13-10 49er lead. The Waves then took advantage on a LBSU service error and added a block by Carroll and Santos as well as a Carroll kill to tie the game up at 13. After a 3-0 49er run gave them an 18-15 lead, Riecks and Carroll added two kills apiece on a 4-2 Wave run that brought Pepperdine within one at 20-19. Down 23-20, the Waves went on a 6-1 run to give them the first lead of the game as a host of Pepperdine players contributed for all six points. Riecks and sophomore middle blocker Tyler Jaynes (Granite Bay, Calif. / Granite Bay HS) added kills while Santos, Carroll and junior outside hitter Brent Schirripa (Los Angeles, Calif. /Crespi Carmelite HS) accounted for a pair of blocks and junior outside hitter Sean Pedersen (Evergreen Park, Ill. /Mount Carmel HS/Cal State Northridge) added an ace. Up 29-26, Carroll ended the game on a kill to force a fifth and final game to determine the match.

The Waves stepped up big as they entered the final and deciding game and outhit LBSU .667-.267. Pepperdine jumped out to an early 5-1 lead with a block from Santos and Schrippa followed by a Santos kill and a Carroll ace. Both teams continued to exchange points until a Schrippa kill gave the Waves a 14-10 advantage. After one last 49er run, Santos ended the match with a kill on a 15-12 victory.

The Waves will continue their road trip tomorrow evening (Saturday, March 7) in La Jolla, Calif. against #10 UC San Diego at 7 p.m.

Article courtesy of Pepperdine athletics.

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