August 9, 2007

Patak Paces U.S. Men in Win at World University Games

Aug. 9, 2007

BANGKOK, Thailand - Evan Patak, a former top player for the UC Santa Barbara men's volleyball team, helped lead the United States to a win over Germany Thursday in its first match at the 2007 World University Games in Southeast Asia.

In Pool C play, the U.S. topped Germany in three sets by scores of 25-22, 25-22, and 25-22 at the IMPACT Convention Center in Bangkok.

Patak, who played his final season at UCSB in 2007, paced the U.S. squad with a team-high 13 points in the match. The Gauchos' all-time leader in service aces, Patak dished out four un-returnable balls Thursday.

"We didn't know what to expect," said Patak, a six-foot-eight opposite hitter. "But, with every team, we're just focused on taking care of our side of the net, and as the match progresses, we get a better feel for the other team. That was our mentality going into this. (Germany) was good and they challenged us in some areas. We made some adjustments and got the win."

Long Beach State's Paul Lotman finished with 10 points and UC Irvine's David Smith totaled eight. Pepperdine's Andy Hein had a team-best two blocks.

In 2003, Patak, a Pleasanton, Calif. native, helped lead the U.S. contingent to a bronze medal at the World University Games. He was selected to play again in 2005, but an injury forced him to the sidelines.

The U.S. continues pool play vs. Sweden on Friday at Thammasat University.

The World University Games, sponsored by FISU, the International University Sport Federation, bring together top collegiate athletes from around the world for 11 days of competition in a multi-sport Olympic-style event. The World University Games or Universiade, which include both summer and winter versions, are held every two years for student-athletes between the ages of 17 and 28. Eligible athletes must be registered for a full course of study at a university or have obtained their degrees within a year of the Games. The 2007 Games run from August 8-18 with more than 160 countries and nearly 12,000 athletes competing.

--www.UCSBgauchos.com--

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