PALO ALTO - UC Santa Cruz opened their 2019 season with a hard-fought 3-0 (25-11, 25-17, 25-15) loss at Division I Stanford University.
Stanford (2-0) outhit UCSC .500 to .028, tallying 49 kills to 21 by the Banana Slugs in the first match between the two schools in four years. The Cardinal also had five aces to just one by UCSC and outdug the visitors 22-10.
Stanford opened the game with a 17-6 run enroute to a first set win. The second set was the closest, with seven ties before Stanford went on a 9-2 run to make it 20-13, helped by three service aces.Set three started close with UCSC getting to within 5-4, helped by kills from Ian Pizzuti and Aaron Fox. However, Stanford went on an 11-1 run to make it 16-5.
Raymond Cascio and Quinn Barrett each tallied five kills for UCSC, with Barrett adding the only ace UCSC served on the night. Jacob Shapiro led UCSC with a .300 hitting percentage with four kills on ten attempts. Freshman Matthew Nealon had 16 assists and 3 block assists.
UCSC regroups to host the 2019 Slug Slam next Saturday and Sunday at KP Arena.