WVB: UC Davis digs up win at UCSB

UCSB (6-16, 2-9) surrendered a 3-0 loss to UC Davis (12-14, 7-5) as the Aggies delivered a strong attacking performance in the Thunderdome on Friday night.

Jaylen Villanueva and Devin Joos paced Santa Barbara with 10 and nine kills, respectively. Overall, the Gauchos struggled on offense with a .154 attacking percentage.

On defense, Emilia Petrachi picked up 19 digs, while Elizabeth Sheffield recorded a pair of block assists.

Former San Marcos star Emily Allen played in all three sets for UC Davis and had two kills and nine digs.

Villanueva started off the match on a high note in recording six of her kills in the first game, including five through UCSB’s first 12 points. Her swing played a huge role in keeping the score early, as the teams battled to a 12-12 tie. UCSB registered eight of their points with kills up to the point with Villanueva’s five leading the way, while Joos and Grunt recorded two and one, respectively.

The Aggies made their initial break with a 4-0 run to snap the tie, as Allie Wegener swung for two kills during that stretch. Santa Barbara answered back with a 3-0 to get within one point, as Sheffield got involved on offense with a pair of kills.

The teams exchanged points until UC Davis led 19-18. However a block from Kelechi Ohiri and Sophia Mar regained service for the Aggies and triggered a 6-1 run to the end the first set.

The second set was also started as a back-and-forth affair with the Gauchos nabbing an 11-10 lead. Ali Barbeau and Devin Joos found their swings early, as the two outside hitters combined for six kills through the Gauchos’ opening 11 points.

But the Aggies erased the deficit with six unanswered points in taking a 16-11 lead. The Gauchos were quick to bounce back and pull themselves within two points with Grunt and Sheffield producing a kill each. Davis, though, went on to take the game 25-18, as Kaylin Squyres carried them with four kills on an 8-3, game-clinching run.

After the break, the Aggies continued their strong play and grabbed an overwhelming 13-3 lead in opening the third game. The lead was too much for the Gauchos to overcome and Davis finished on top 25-14.

UCSB will be back in the Thunderdome tomorrow night when they host UC Irvine at 7 p.m.