No. 10 UCSB Swept at Stanford

Henri Cherry (Photo by Vince Agapito)
Henri Cherry (Photo by Vince Agapito)

PALO ALTO, Calif. – No. 4 Stanford hit .526 as a team on Friday en route to a three-game win over No. 10 UC Santa Barbara at Burnham Pavillion, the highest attack clip recorded by a Gauchos' opponent this season. 

Set scores for the match were 25-20, 25-19, 25-8. The loss dropped UCSB to 11-6 on the year with a 7-5 mark in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation play. Stanford jumped to 11-2, 9-2 with the sweep. 

Freshman middle blocker Henri Cherry had the best night offensively for UCSB, posting a team-high eight kills on 11 swings. Junior opposite Matt Marsh added seven kills on top of that with outside hitter Jacob Delson contributing six. Senior setter Jonah Seif had a match-high three service aces alongside his 26 assists. 

Stanford was led by the two-headed monster of Gabriel Vega and Madison Hayden, who each had at least a dozen kills and hit over .600. Hayden led all players with 14 putdowns on .667 hitting. 

UCSB hit a match-best .333 in the first game and despite never leading were still in it late. One of Seif's three aces brought UCSB within two at 16-18 and then a bad set from Hayden shrunk the deficit to just a single point. But from there, Stanford racked up four consecutive points, going up 22-17 on a dump from setter James Shaw. A Gaucho service error later in the set gave the game advantage to Stanford. 

The Cardinal stormed out to a 5-0 lead to start the second, giving the host a cushion they more or less maintained throughout the game. 

UCSB struggled in the final game, scoring just eight points. 

Winners of three straight prior to Friday's night's contest, the Gauchos will look to return to their winning ways next week as they host USC on Wednesday night and Cal Baptist on Friday night at Rob Gym. UCSB defeated both of those teams on the road in late January.