The UCSB (5-11, 1-2 Big West) men’s volleyball team returned to Rob Gym in thunderous fashion as they swept Harvard (6-8, 0-4 Ivy League), 3-0 (25-21, 25-18, 25-18) Tuesday night. Once again, Owen Birg was on fire on the offensive front, recording a game-high 15 kills on just 26 swings.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The first set saw the Gauchos come from behind after Harvard came out swinging. However, UCSB’s consistently well-placed hits began to put the pressure on the Crimson’s defense as Santa Barbara continued its aggressive offensive in the second set, recording 16 kills. While the Crimson tried their best to return the energy, keeping the frame tied for a while, the Gauchos ultimately came away with the lead to end the set with a score of 25-18. Harvard were unable to regain their momentum in the third set, as UCSB’s consistent defense and hard-hitting offense kept them ahead to earn the win over the Ivy League school.
ON THE STAT SHEET
● Owen Birg shows no signs of slowing down, leading the team in kills (15) and digs (5) for the game.
● Ryan Wilcox continues to be a consistent heavy-hitter for the Gauchos as he saw put up 12 kills and added five digs alongside Birg.
● Jack Walmer continues to be crucial to the Gauchos’ offensive strategy, totalling 31 assists as well as three digs, a block, and a service ace.
Next up, UCSB will take on UC Irvine in a home-away series. The first game will take place today at Rob Gym and the second one on Friday at Bren Events Center in Irvine. First serve for both games will be at 7 p.m.
Eric Boose is assistant director of athletic communications at UCSB.