No. 6 Stanford Defeats UC San Diego 3-0
Cardinal's improve to 2-0 with straight-game victory
Jan. 23, 1998
STANFORD, CA. - The defending national champion and sixth-ranked Stanford men's volleyball team defeated UC San Diego 3-0 (15-5, 15-11, 15-12) in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation opener for both teams. With the win, the Cardinal improved to 2-0 overall, while the loss dropped UCSD to 1-2.
Stanford never trailed in the opening game, building leads 6-1, 10-2 and 13-3 before putting the first stanza away 15-5. The Cardinal's strong play at the net, which recorded six total blocks and limited the Triton's to a -0.74 attack percentage, paved the way.
UCSD settled in game two and took its first lead of the match at 4-3. The Tritons would eventually extend the lead to 11-6 before the Cardinal rallied back. Down 11-8, senior swing hitter Devin Poolman brought the Cardinal to within one (11-10) with back-to-back service aces that swung the momentum to Stanford. A block by senior middle blocker Tad Hoffman capped a 9-0 Stanford run and delivered the Cardinal to a 15-11 game two win.
The Tritons would again jump out to an early lead in game three, building an 8-4 advantage before the Cardinal rallied again. Stanford put together an 11-4 run to close the match out, which was ended by Hoffman again, this time with his ninth kill of the match.
Following up a 32-kill performance in the season opener against Ohio State, sophomore sensation Andy Witt again paced the Stanford attack with a match-high 16 kills while hitting .423 (16-5-26).
"It (the match) was a struggle, primarily receiving serve," said Stanford head coach Ruben Nieves, "but the guys stuck together and came up with the big plays when we needed them the most. We would really like to play better against San Diego State (Stanford's next opponent) and not put ourselves in hole like we did tonight in games two and three. If we can find a way to receive serve better, we will be just fine."
Stanford will return to action tomorrow when they host MPSF Pacific Division rival San Diego State at 3:00 p.m. in Burnham Pavilion.