Matadors Begin MPSF Season Tuesday at UCLA, Host UC Santa Barbara Friday
No. 11 Cal State Northridge Matadors (0-0, 0-0 MPSF) at No. 5 UCLA Bruins (2-1, 0-0 MPSF)
Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013 - 7:00 p.m. PT
Pauley Pavilion (13,800) - Los Angeles, Calif.
Live Stats: UCLABruins.com
Streaming Video: none
In-game Twitter updates: @GoMatadors
No. 9 UC Santa Barbara Gauchos (2-1, 0-0 MPSF) at No. 11 Cal State Northridge Matadors (0-0, 0-0 MPSF)
Friday, Jan. 11, 2013 - 7:00 p.m. PT
The Matadome - Northridge, Calif.
Live Stats: GoMatadors.com
Streaming Video: none
In-game Twitter updates: @GoMatadors
Following a pair of exhibition matches last week, 11th-ranked Cal State Northridge officially opens the 2013 season Tuesday against the fifth-ranked UCLA Bruins at the New Pauley Pavilion at 7 p.m. The Matadors swept both the University of Alberta and British Columbia-Okanagan in their exhibition tune-ups at USC's Galen Center as part of the 4-team event. Following Tuesday's match at UCLA, Northridge takes on ninth-ranked UC Santa Barbara Friday in the Matadors 2013 home opener at 7 p.m.
NORTHRIDGE ON THE NET
Follow Cal State Matador volleyball online at the official online home of Cal State Northridge athletics, www.GoMatadors.com. Fans can also follow the Matadors at Twitter.com/gomatadors and YouTube.com/northridgeathletics. Fans can view and print the Matadors 2013 Record Book online at GoMatadors.com. The guide features statistics and a complete men's volleyball history. Selected Cal State Northridge matches will be streamed live at GoMatadors.com.
MATADORS IN SEASON OPENERS
Cal State Matador brings a 22-14 (.611) record in season openers into Tuesday's match at UCLA. The Matadors are 16-20 (.444) in conference season openers dating back to 1977. Last season, CSUN fell to UCLA in its season opener at the UCSB Invitational but prior to that the Matadors had won 10 of their last 12 season openers dating back to the 2000 season.
The Bruins (2-1, 0-0 MPSF) opened the season at the UC Santa Barbara Invitational where they lost in five in the championship match to top-ranked UC Irvine. UCLA also went five with No. 13 UC Santa Barbara and UC San Diego to advance to the title match. Junior Robart Page led the Bruins with 39 kills (3.90 kpg) over three matches while hitting .397 in 78 swings. UCLA is hitting .286 as a team through three matches ... The Gauchos (2-1, 0-0 MPSF) dropped their season-opener to UCLA but finished with straight-set sweeps over both Lewis and Loyola-Chicago at the UCSB Invitational. UC Santa Barbara, which hosts No. 6 Long Beach State on Wednesday, was led by Matt Marsh's 17 kills against Loyola while Dylan Davis had eight blocks and was named to the All-Tournament team.
RECAPPING THE EXHIBITION SEASON
For the first time since 2005, Cal State Northridge opened the season somewhere other that Santa Barbara. The Matadors, who have opened at the annual UCSB Invitational every season since 2005, instead traveled south to Los Angeles to take on Alberta and BC-Okanagan as part of the USC 4-team exhibition tournament. In the opener, the Matadors defeated the University of Alberta 25-22, 25-16, 25-22. Junior Brandon Lebrock paced the Matador offense as he pounded a match-high 12 kills while hitting .318 in 22 swings. Lebrock also served three aces to go with three digs and a pair of blocks. Sophomore middle Greg Faulkner also had a nice return to action as he competed in a match for the first time since Jan. 13 of the 2012 season. Faulkner put down 11 kills in 15 attacks to hit .600 while also blocking three Alberta attacks. Senior John Baker chipped in seven kills (.222) from the opposite while also posting a team-high five digs and tying for match-high honors with five blocks. Fellow senior Drew Staker also had five blocks to go with two aces. Sophomore setter Travis Magorien made just the sixth start of his collegiate career and handed out 33 assists along and also had three of CSUN's 11 aces. As a team, the Matadors hit .226 while the Golden Bears hit .095. On Friday, Baker put down a match-high 13 kills as CSUN swept British Columbia-Okanagan 25-16, 25-22, 25-12. Baker led a trio of Northridge hitters in double figures as he hit .400 in 25 swings. The senior opposite also chipped in six digs and had two of the Matadors' three aces. Jared Moore started in place of Staker in the middle and had 11 kills in 14 swings without an error (.786) and Lebrock also notched 11 kills while hitting .375. Cory Wagner came off the bench to knock down seven kills while also posting a match-high eight digs and Magorien handed out 34 assists as Northridge hit a robust .469 as a team.
MATADORS MOVE UP TO 11TH IN AVCA TOP-15 POLL
Cal State Northridge moved up one spot to 11th in the second AVCA Top-15 poll of the 2013 season. The Matadors, who ranked 12th in the preseason poll, received 79 points this week to gain one position in the rankings. Cal State Northridge has now been ranked in 173 of the last 185 weekly polls dating back to the 2002 season. The last time the Matadors were unranked was a period of 12 weeks (Feb. 7-May 2) during the 2011 season. UC Irvine, which won the UCSB Invitational, was the unanimous top-ranked team for the second straight week as the Anteaters earned all 16 first-place votes and 240 total points. BYU (2-0) is second this week followed by Stanford (2-0), Pepperdine (0-0) and UCLA (2-1). Long Beach State (2-1) is sixth this week followed by Penn State (0-0), USC (0-0), UC Santa Barbara (2-1) and Ohio State (1-0). This week's top-15 is filled out by the Matadors (0-0), Cal Baptist (2-1), Lewis (0-3), UC San Diego (1-2) and Pacific (1-0). Loyola-Chicago and George Mason dropped out of the top-15 this week.
PAIR OF MATADORS NAMED TO OFF THE BLOCK TEAM
Both junior Brandon Lebrock and sophomore Greg Faulkner received votes on the annual Off the Block 2013 Preseason All-American Team. Lebrock, a 2012 honorable mention All-MPSF pick, received one point as did Faulkner, a 2011 MPSF All-Freshman Team selection. A total of 49 NCAA Division I players received at least one point on the team selected by an 18-member voting committee made up of coaches and media members.
CAMPBELL PICKS UP 225TH CAREER WIN
Having become Cal State Northridge men's volleyball's all-time winningest coach during the 2010 season, Jeff Campbell picked up the latest milestone win of his 16-year Matador career in Northridge's 3-0 win at UC San Diego on Feb. 24, 2012. The victory gave the Matador boss his 225th career victory. Campbell, who now has a career record of 232-207 (.528), reached the 150 and 200 career wins over the last four seasons and now sets his sights on his 250th career win. Currently, the third-longest tenured head coach at Cal State Northridge (men's golf coach Jim Bracken is in his 27th season & men's basketball head coach Bobby Braswell is in his 17th season) Campbell has posted double figure win totals in 14 of his 16 seasons on the bench and notched a career-best 24 wins in 2009.
MATADORS SIGN TRIO TO NLI'S
Jeff Campbell also announced the signing of Will Parke, Trevor Bryant and Justin Beskeen to National Letters of Intent to play for the Matadors. Parke, a 6-6 outside hitter from Brea Olinda High School in Brea, Calif., is the first player to sign with the Matadors during the early signing period. He has lettered in both volleyball and track & field earning first team All-Century League honors for the Wildcats volleyball team in 2010, 2011 and 2012. Parke is also a three-time team Most Valuable Player as he heads into his senior season in 2013. He was also selected to play for the USA Select A1 Team in 2011 and averaged 31 kills per match as a junior in 2012. Bryant, a 6-6 setter from Nevada Union High School in Grass Valley, Calif., is the second player to sign with the Matadors during the early signing period. He was a first team all-league setter for the Miners and coach Marco Salcedo in both 2011 and 2012 while also earning team Most Valuable Player accolades in 2011. Bryant also earned the Coaches Award as a freshman in 2010. He also competes for the High Performance Volleyball Club. Beskeen, a 6-6 middle blocker from Bear River High School in Grass Valley, Calif., is the third player to sign with Cal State Northridge during the early signing period. As a middle for coach Lance Mansuetti, he earned first team All-Capital Athletic League honors in 2012 as well as earning The Union Male Athlete of the Year accolades. Beskeen also competed for the Bruins basketball team earning All-Pioneer League and team MVP honors as a forward. He also competes for the Northern California Volleyball Club (NCVC).
"All three players have great attitudes and are really looking forward to being in the program, playing at the Division I level, playing for Cal State Northridge and I'm sure all three will do great things for us," said Campbell.
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