Long Beach triumphs in Big West opener

Less than halfway through the first set, the match was decided. UC Riverside’s junior outside hitter Kaiulani Ahuna limped off the floor with an apparent knee injury, giving the Long Beach women’s volleyball team an undeniable advantage. Ahuna averages 5.25 kills per set, second in the Big West and fourth in the NCAA.Without her, the Highlanders could not maintain the pace the 49ers set with their well-rounded offense. Long Beach (9-5, 1-0 Big West) never looked back and earned its first conference win 25-17, 25-21, 25-21. “We’re happy we were able to start off our conference at home,” head coach Joy McKienzie-Fuerbringer said. “Our performance wasn’t our best, but we had a really spread out offense.” It was a busy weekend for the 49ers, playing four games in the last six days, but there was a  different feeling on the floor going into conference play compared to last year. An 8-5 overall record before conference play is an immense improvement for a team that came into conference play 3-10 last season. The team looked like they were relaxed during warm ups, smiling and talking before the match. “We came in a lot stronger this season and with our play the

Long Beach falls to No. 16 UCLA

With Long Beach State down two points in the fourth set, freshman outside hitter Kashauna Williams blocked the Bruins kill, making it hit the ground into a cluster of UCLA players and onto the sidelines. Long Beach fans cheered, but seconds later a career-high performance from Williams was spoiled, and the Walter Pyramid was filled with booing fans. The referees called the ball out on Long Beach, causing the team to drop the match in a controversial call. The Long Beach State women’s volleyball team (6-5) put up a fight in their Walter Pyramid return against No. 16 UCLA (5-2), pushing the team to nearly five sets, but ultimately falling 25-21, 17-25, 25-23, 25-23. The deciding point for the team came late in the fourth set following a 3-0 run from Long Beach. Both teams went up for a block and thought the other touched the ball last. “Being two points away from a ranked opponent is a very good opportunity for us and our program,” junior outside hitter Hailey Harward said. “So I take that so personally and I take that to heart that we’re really trying to build something amazing here and we have chances and we’re right

By | 2018-09-13T23:33:19-07:00 Sep 13, 2018 | 11:28 pm|Categories: Showcase, Sports, Today, Women's Sports, Women's Volleyball|Tags: , , , , , |

Long Beach State triumphs in home opener

The Long Beach State women’s volleyball home opener was met with the sights and sounds of the iconic hot dog suit, decked out fans and a victory, albeit rather messy. Coming off a rocky road trip in Oregon, Long Beach (2-2) found its groove right at home Tuesday night against Seattle University. The 49ers defeated the Redhawks 25-17, 25-18, 19-25, 25-18 in front of 768 fans, with a well-rounded offensive effort. “I’m really proud of how the girls showed up tonight,” head coach Joy McKienzie-Fuerbringer said. “There was a lot of celebration with [Xue’s] kills tonight and I’m really proud of how we played tonight and how quickly we recovered after the loss in the third set.” Long Beach dominated in the first two sets, but lost its composure in the third. The team had to regroup in the fourth set to take home its second win of the season. The 49ers started off hot behind middle blocker YiZhi Xue’s five kills. Xue led the team with a career high 15 kills, hitting at .778 “I feel pretty good, it was our first home game so we came out really strong,” Xue said. “I have a really good connection with

By | 2018-08-29T11:50:41-07:00 Aug 28, 2018 | 10:01 pm|Categories: Showcase, Sports, Today, Women's Sports, Women's Volleyball|Tags: , , , , , |