Warrior Volleyball: Waves hang four on UH

Pepperdine defeats Hawaii in four games in a MPSF match in Malibu.

Malibu, CA -Delano Thomas put down a career high 28 kills, but the Warriors could not contain the Pepperdine Waves as they sailed to a 3-1 (25-30, 33-31, 30-17, 30-25) victory and a chance to host in the first round of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation tournament. Hawai`i, who now drops to 16-11, 12-9 MPSF, will not be able to procure a first-round home berth in MPSF post-season play and will again be on the road in Southern California next Saturday.

Besides Thomas's career kill numbers, the junior also served up one ace and had nine digs for the night. Second on the Warriors kill list was Pedro Azenha with 13 kills and two aces; while setter Kimo Tuyay dished up 51 assists and now only needs 25 to become the Warriors career assist leader. Libero Alfred Reft matched his career high 15 digs tonight; but the Warriors struggled on defense only putting up five team blocks while the Waves put up an astounding 21 team blocks.

The Warriors came out strong in game one, jumping to an early 5-2 lead. The Warriors dominated game one, largely off the arm of Thomas who had nine kills in the game. Up seven at 19-26, the Warriors continued to maintain control of the game and only gave up six more points before another Thomas kill sealed up the win, 30-25.

Pepperdine quickly established themselves in game two, leaving the Warriors to play catch up. But catch up they did, an Azenha kill followed by two consecutive Pepperdine errors evened the score at 15-all. The Waves pushed ahead to lead by four at 23-19 and the Warriors again fought back to tie the game at 29-all before the Waves took game two, 33-31.

The Warriors game faltered in game three and the Waves took advantage of the squads waning confidence. Pepperdine took the early 4-0 lead as Hawai`i tried to put together another come back. But they could not stop the Waves from crashing around them and lost game three, 30-16.

Game four saw much of the same as the Warriors failed to come up with an answer to the Waves big block. After managing to tie the match at 12-all, the Warriors again fell behind as the Waves scored ten of the following 15 points to make the score 22-17. Hawai`i managed to come within two at 28-26, but a Thomas service error gave Pepperdine match point and they took it off a kill from Fred Winters. Winters had the Waves second best performance with 12 kills; while Sean Rooney led the team with 14 kills.

The Warriors will again face the Waves tomorrow night at the Firestone Field House in Malibu at 4:00 pm HST.

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