49ers prove no match for top-ranked Trojans

first_imgThe No. 1 USC Trojans men’s volleyball team swept the No. 8 Long Beach State 49ers with scores of 25-17, 28-26 and 25-19 for their 16th straight victory on Thursday evening at the Long Beach Pyramid. The victory gives the Trojans (21-4, 17-4) a share of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation title and puts them one win away from clinching the top seed in the MPSF playoffs.Hard hitting · Senior outside hitter Tony Ciarelli had nine kills in the win against Long Beach State. The victory is USC’s 16th straight. – Daily Trojan file photoThe Pyramid in Long Beach is known in college volleyball to give the 49ers a huge home-court advantage due to its unique structure and its effect on visitors’ depth perception. Coupled with the 49ers (14-14, 9-12) desperation to clinch a bid in the eight-team MPSF tournament, the visit was a potential trap-match for the Trojans.“We’re thrilled to win this and get it out of the way. It’s a tough venue to play in. Hitting high balls is tough in here,” said USC coach Bill Ferguson. “They served really tough and they have one of the better home court advantages in the league.”National Player of the Year candidate Tony Ciarelli reeled off four straight kills en route to a 5-0 start to the match. The 11 aces are a USC match record.“Tony’s serving was unbelievable,” Ferguson said. “He’s had an unbelievable amount of focus in preparing for each of these matches.”The Trojans staved off a 24-25 deficit in the second set after two straight hitting errors. Instead of folding, senior middle blocker and co-captain Steven Shandrick came up with a big block and a game-winning service ace to win in a 28-26 tiebreak.“I needed that. I had a rough stretch in hitting over the course of the match,” Shandrick said. “Those points mentally got me back in the game and got me and the team fired up for the third set.”The Trojans have not lost to a team ranked lower than them this year and have dropped only seven sets during the 16-match winning streak.“It’s good to get the win in the pressure cooker,” Ferguson said. “I’m proud of how we responded in the second set in such a tough environment.”Ciarelli led the way with nine kills to go and received plenty of help from his teammates. Freshman middle blocker Robert Feathers finished with four kills earned at a .667 clip and junior opposite Maddison McKibbin finished with five kills earned at a .571 clip in one set off the bench.The Trojans head to No. 11 Cal State Northridge on Saturday evening in hopes of clinching the MPSF title. Cal State Northridge (11-16, 7-13) is fighting to clinch a spot in the MPSF playoffs.“We want to win the outright because sharing sucks. There are a lot of things riding on this match. We need to keep playing for our pride and for each other,” Shandrick said. “If we keep playing like we do and keep improving like we do we’re setting ourselves up for a win.”last_img read more


first_imgAction between Letterkenny Rovers and Keadue at the AURA earlier this afternoon. Picture by Stephen Doherty.Letterkenny Rovers have won the Donegal Youth League for the FOURTH year in-a-row following a 2-0 victory over Keadue Rovers this afternoon.Goals from Eoin Slevin and Igor Arriel ensured that Rovers would be crowned champions after a tough encounter with Keadue Rovers.The game was played at the AURA and Rovers got off to a dream start when Slevin fired them ahead after seven minutes. Keadue delivered a determined and spirited display and pressed hard to get back in the match.They were unlucky not to draw level, but when substitute Igor Arriel scored with fifteen minutes to go there was no way back for Brendan Boyle’s side.Letterkenny Rovers have gone the entire season unbeaten and have shown remarkable consistency and attitude throughout the campaign.They are deserving league champions and we congratulate all the players and staff at the club on another brilliant achievement.   SOCCER NEWS: LETTERKENNY YOUTHS WIN FOURTH CONSECUTIVE LEAGUE TITLE was last modified: March 17th, 2015 by Mark ForkerShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:auraLeague TitlenewsSoccer. Letterkenny RoversSportsuccesslast_img read more