By DANIEL MOEBUS-BOWLES
UCSB SPORTS WRITER
The 20th win of the 2021 season came Tuesday night for the UCSB women’s volleyball team as the Gauchos swept CSUN on the road.
UCSB has now won three straight and has posted 20 or more wins in back-to-back seasons.
Briana McKnight led all players with a career-high 11 kills on a .348 hitting percentage
UCSB outhit CSUN .326 to .188 and posted 44 kills
And Michelle Ohwobete saw her sixth straight double-digit kill performance posting 10 ti go with six digs and a pair of blocks.
The night started well for the Gauchos, with UCSB winning the first set 25-17.
UCSB hit a match-high .438 clip and converted on 82% of its sideout opportunities in the opening set that saw just two ties and zero lead changes
An early 6-1 run saw the Gauchos take a comfortable 13-7 lead and hold off the Matadors from there
Deni Wilson clinched it with one of her three kills in the set.
Then UCSB won the second set 25-23.
The second frame was the closest contest of the night with six ties and each team posting similar numbers.
Trading punches through the middle points, the two teams met at 17-17 where the Gauchos caught a 3-0 run to force a Matador timeout.
CSUN refused to go away, notching it at 22 apiece, and once again Wilson sealed it from the middle sending down another kill.
UCSB won the third set 25-15.
UCSB held CSUN to just eight kills and a .114 hitting percentage in the final set, and the Gauchos did a great job of holding serve with the Matadors going just 10-for-25 on sideout opportunities
The Gauchos found their largest lead of the set and the night with their final point as Macall Peed notched an ace to end the match up 10 points
UCSB now has its sights set on the final match of the regular season this Saturday at Hawai’i. The Gauchos will need a little help from these same Matadors, who match up with UH on Friday.
Should CSUN win that match, UCSB will be battling Hawai’i for the Big West title.
Daniel Moebus-Bowles works in media relations/communications at UCSB.