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Long Beach State Sweeps Away Pepperdine Win Streak

March 31, 2005

LONG BEACH, Calif. - For the first time since Jan. 19 the Pepperdine men's volleyball team came out on the short end of a match as the Waves dropped a 3-0 (31-29, 30-27, 30-26) decision to No. 7 Long Beach State Thursday night at the Walter Pyramid in Long Beach Calif.

Sean Rooney led the Waves (17-2, 17-2 MPSF) with 21 kills, including eight in game three, John Parfitt added 13 and John Mayer chipped in 11 but it was not enough as Pepperdine was out hit by a .420-.364 margin.

It was a two-man show for Long Beach (16-8, 10-7 MPSF) as Robert Tarr recorded 16 kills on 25 swings (.520) and Duncan Budinger logged 11 kills on 14 swings (.714). The 49ers capitalized on key Pepperdine mistakes as the Waves turned in 15 service errors to LBSU's eight.

The first game of the night opened as a seesaw battle with the two sides trading points to a 7-7 tie. LBSU opened a two-point gap on a Yassir Sliti kill and ace at 9-7. With Parfitt at the service line, the Waves went on a 3-0 run. The spurt included a Rooney kill to even the game up at 9-all and a Parfitt ace which gave Pepperdine a 10-9 advantage. The Wave lead would reach as many as five, 19-14, before back-to-back solo blocks from Paul Lotman knotted the affair at 25-25. A Tarr kill four points later put the 49ers up, 28-27. Pepperdine would fight off the first game point when LBSU was called for a blocking error, but a Rooney attack would sail long on the second 49er game-point try giving Long Beach the 1-0 lead.

Pepperdine grabbed control of the second game early and led 14-11 before three-consecutive Wave errors evened the game at 14-all. Kills from Andy Hein and Parfitt were answered with a 3-0 49er run. An ace by Hein would regain the lead for Pepperdine, 19-18, but consecutive hitting errors by the Waves propelled LBSU to the 22-20 lead. The Waves would rally to tie the game at 24-24. But a service error would give the 49ers another lead, a lead it would not relinquish. It marked just the second time this season Pepperdine had been down two games to none.

A shell-shocked Wave team took the floor in game three only to find itself down by three at 10-7. The teams traded sideouts until a Rooney kill was followed by a block from Tom Hulse and Mayer as Pepperdine started to climb back into the game. Following a Pafitt and Hein block, the Waves took their first lead of the game, 22-21. After a Hulse block, the lead was two, 26-24, but LBSU would go on a 6-0 run to close out the match and complete the sweep.

Pepperdine will continue its road swing Saturday evening at 7:00 p.m. (PT) when it travels South to San Diego to take on the Tritons.