UCLA has too much firepower for Gauchos

UCSB ran into a red-hot UCLA men’s volleyball team and was swept, 25-18, 25-20, 25-19, on Friday night in Westwood.

It was the third straight loss for the Gauchos, who fall to 2-5 overall and 0-3 in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation. UCLA improved to 9-1 and 4-0.

UCLA coach Al Scates, who is retiring after 50 years at the helm, watched his Bruins outblock UCSB 12-6 for the match, and hit a robust .432. Jeremy Casebeer, a former Santa Barbara High star, led the Bruins with 10 kills

UCSB was led by senior outside hitter Blaine Nielsen’s nine kills. Nielsen had an especially efficient night, hitting .389. Sophomore middle blocker Evan Licht hit .444, with five kills.

Licht tallied five kills on the night and also led all players with two service aces.

UCSB will look to right the ship next week, as they return to the Los Angeles area for a pair of matches against USC on Wednesday, Feb. 1, followed by a tilt at Pepperdine on Friday, Feb. 3.