MVB: Gauchos swept at Stanford

PALO ALTO – In their first of four away matches, the No. 5 UC Santa Barbara Gauchos (8-4, 7-4 MPSF) were defeated in straight sets (25-17, 25-18, 25-17) against the No. 9 Stanford Cardinal (9-5, 6-5 MPSF). UCSB had previously defeated Stanford at home in five sets when the Cardinal was ranked No. 1 overall.

UCSB came out in the first set against Stanford to reach a 7-7 tie. However, the Gauchos were stymied by the Cardinal net presence for the rest of the set and were unable to capture the set. Though UCSB put together 33 overall attacks, they could only manage 10 kills while hitting 11 errors. In addition, the Cardinal defense was able to put up eight blocks.

The second set witnessed the Gauchos jump out to a 5-2 lead with help from two Ryan Thompson kills. The senior middle blocker finished the night with six kills and assisted in two blocks. Stanford was then able to tie the set at 13 before taking the set win. Again, the Cardinal defense was critical for their set win, tacking on another six blocks and forcing 10 Gaucho attack errors.

In the third and final set, Stanford blocked another six attacks while the Gauchos managed only seven kills. Leading the wall at the net was Conrad Kaminski with assists in seven blocks and a solo block. Stanford’s defense held Evan Licht to five kills for the match while also limiting Austin Kingi and Matt Hanley to four kills each. Offensively, the Cardinal were led by Eric Mochalski with 13 kills, hitting .667 clip for the match and assisting in five blocks.