UC Irvine Pulls Plug on UH Volleyball Season
By Fred Guzman
Hawaii’s roller-coaster men’s volleyball season ended on a definite downer as the Rainbows suffered a 28-26, 30-28, 25-21 road loss to UC Irvine in Saturday’s quarterfinals of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation playoffs.
Sophomore All-American Jonas Umlauft led UH with 18 kills as the nationally sixth-ranked Bows finished with a 15-13 overall record. The third-ranked Anteaters will take a 19-11 mark into Thursday night’s semifinals at top-ranked USC. The MPSF champion will automatically qualify for the NCAA tournament. The MPSF runner-up generally gets an at-large berth in the national Final Four.
BASEBALL: This non-conference series was supposed to provide Hawaii with an opportunity to tune up for its biggest challenge of the baseball season. Instead, the Rainbows lost two of three games against a mid-major team that rolled into Les Murakami Stadium with a 15-21 record.
UH was unable to climb out of a 5-0 hole in the first inning and suffered a 7-2 loss to the Crusaders. Hardly the way to prepare for this week’s crucial four-game conference road series at ninth-ranked Fresno State.
UH fell behind big early before rallying for five runs in the bottom of the ninth inning in Thursday’s 8-7 loss. On Friday, Hawaii overcame six errors by capitalizing on the offensive contributions of Breland Almadova and Kolten Wong in an ugly 9-8 victory at Les Murakami Stadium.Almadova homered and scored three times while Wong drove in three runs.
Saturday’s setback dropped Hawaii’s overall record to 22-17 as the Bows ended a seven-week 27-game homestand before going on the road for 12 of its final 16 regular-season games.
SOFTBALL: The names are familiar, but the results are not. That’s been the bottom line for the Rainbow Wahine softball team a season after having reached the Women’s College World Series. On Saturday, UH fell to fourth place in the WAC after dropping both ends of a double-header to visiting Boise State by scores of 7-4 and 3-2. The results, coupled with Friday’s 2-1 loss to the Lady Broncos, dropped Hawaii’s records to 30-16 overall and 8-7 in the WAC.