Maui Sports

Weary Warriors loss in four to UC Irvine

February 23, 2011, 9:41 AM HST
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By Fred Guzman

Maybe, playing its fourth road match in five nights was too much for the Hawaii men’s volleyball team. Maybe, it was simply a matter of not being able to handle UC Irvine’s sensational service game.

Regardless, the Rainbow Warriors appeared to run out of gas last night in suffering a 27-25, 20-25, 25-23, 28-26 loss to the Anteaters in a key Mountain Pacific Sports Federation match.

The loss dropped Hawaii’s records to 6-9 overall and 4-6 in the MPSF, dropping UH to seventh place in the nation’s toughest volleyball conference after suffering back-to-back losses to UC Irvine.

The nationally seventh-ranked Anteaters improved to 10-8 and 7-5.

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The stats didn’t add up for Hawaii, which enjoyed a huge advantage at the net, posting a 12 to 3.5 edge in blocks.

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UH also benefitted from an outstanding .511 hitting percentage by its outside hitters, including 25 kills by Jonas Umlauft while Steve Hunt added 16 kills and Joshua Walker 14.

But Hawaii still came away with a setback.

That’s because the Anteater had 13 aces and repeatedly forced over-passes to overcome deficits of 24-22 in the first set, 22-15 in the third, and 24-22 in the fourth.

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UH returns home for conference matches against Pepperdine on March 4 and 5 followed by Pacific the following week.

SOFTBALL: The nationally 10th-ranked Rainbow Wahine softball team improved to 11-1 yesterday by sweeping a twinbill at UC Riverside as both Stephanie Ricketts and Kaia Parnaby tossed one-hitters.

Hawaii won the opener 2-0 as Rickets went the distance for the sixth time in the young season. She took a no-hitter through the first 5.2 innings and faced just two batters over the minimum (23) with six strike outs and two walks.

The Rainbow Wahine took a 1-0 lead in the first on a throwing error and added their second run in the fifth with the help of another miscue.

UH got its usually potent bats back in gear in the nightcap for 9-1 victory in a game shorted to six innings because of the mercy rule.

Parnaby improved her record to 4-0, taking a no-hitter through 3.2 innings. She struck out eight and walked two.

Jessica Iwata launched a solo homer in four-run third for her eighth homer of the season while Sharla Kliebenstein added a two-run blast.

The Rainbow Wahine next head down to the Palm Springs area to play in the Cathedral City Classic, which begins tomorrow. Also entered are sixth-ranked Oklahoma, No. 18 Nebraska, Syracuse and Virginia.

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