National volleyball powers Pepperdine and UCLA will meet for the first time this year at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Pauley Pavilion. Appropriately, they will be playing for first place in the Western Intercollegiate Volleyball Assn.
Pepperdine, defending NCAA champion, is 8-3 overall and 4-0 in the WIVA. The Bruins are 21-3 and 6-0. USC, 4-1 in the WIVA, is in third place.
UCLA has won 10 straight matches and four of the conference victories were three-game sweeps. The Waves, who have won four in a row, defeated UC Irvine in three games last Monday and the week before won two WIVA matches, defeating UC Santa Barbara in five games and San Diego State in four.
The Bruins are led by seniors Asbjorn Volstad, Jeff Williams and Arne Lamberg, freshman Trevor Schirman and junior Don Dendinger. Volstad leads in hitting with a .363 average and an average of 4.3 kills a game. Schirman is the top blocker with an average of 1.7 a game, and Dendinger is next with 1.4.
Senior Matt Rigg tops the Waves in hitting with 5 kills a game, followed by seniors Troy Tanner (4.9) and Rob Scott (4.17) and junior Randy Bergstedt (4.04) Tanner has the best hitting percentage, .379. Other starters are junior Doug Rigg (Matt's brother) and freshman Rob Keller.
UCLA will play host to Penn State, unbeaten as the week started, in a non-conference match at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Pauley Pavilion. The Nittany Lions are led by 6-10, 230-pound middle blocker Chris Chase.
The Waves will entertain the University of Manitoba at 3 p.m. Sunday.
The UCLA men's tennis team, 10-2 overall in dual matches after losses last week to Cal State Long Beach and USC, will play host to UC Santa Barbara at 1:30 p.m. today at the campus Los Angeles Tennis Center.
The Bruins will entertain No. 5 Texas at 1:30 p.m. Monday and San Jose State at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday at the center.
The 5-4 loss to Long Beach ended the Bruins' 49-match winning streak at the center. The school mark of 54 consecutive victories was set from 1974-77 when UCLA played at the Sunset Canyon courts.
The Bruins lost to top-seeded USC, 5-2, in the semifinals of the Collegiate Indoor Team Championships at Louisville, Ky. UCLA Coach Glenn Basset said the defeat by the Trojans, who won the title at Louisville, "was not entirely unexpected. We lived up to our No. 3 seeding by getting by Texas Christian, 5-3, and Cal, 5-2."
Three UCLA players have 11-1 records in dual matches: senior captain Brett Greenwood at No. 3 singles, junior Otis Smith at No. 5 and sophomore Patrick Galbraith at No. 6. Greenwood and Smith won their matches against USC last week.
The Pepperdine baseball team, ranked No. 6 by Baseball America and No. 7 by Collegiate Baseball, will open its West Coast Athletic Conference schedule with three games at the University of San Diego.
The Waves, 9-3-1, will play the Toreros in a single game at 2:30 p.m. Friday and in a double-header at noon Saturday.
UCLA's men gymnasts, ranked second nationally and 18-2 in dual meets, will compete for the Southwest Cup on Friday night against No. 1 Nebraska, Ohio State and host Arizona State at Tempe.
Last week the Bruins scored the highest mark in the country this year, 283.40, in defeating Illinois, then saw that mark topped by Nebraska, which topped UCLA, 283.80 to 278.65.
Against Illinois, Bruin All-Americans Tony Pineda and Curtis Holdsworth finished 1-2 in the all-around. Pineda hit a 57.50, his second-best mark of the year, and Holdsworth scored a career-best 57.25 and tied for first with 9.75s on both the pommel horse and the high bar.
The Pepperdine women's basketball team will be aiming for second place in the West Coast Athletic Conference when it plays host to the University of San Francisco at 7:30 tonight and Santa Clara at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Firestone Fieldhouse.