To kick off the 2013 NCAA men’s volleyball season, the UC Santa Barbara Gauchos hosted their annual Asics Invitational tournament. Cal Baptist, Lewis, Long Beach State, Loyola Chicago, UC Irvine, UCLA, and UC San Diego all joined the host team in competition Jan. 4-5.
UC Irvine and UCLA emerged on top coming out of pool play, and faced off in the championship match. UC Irvine took the match in 5 close sets, winning the tournament for the fourth time in ten years (2003, 2007, 2012, 2013). The Anteaters junior middle blocker Collin Mehring earned the MVP honors.
In the third place match, Long Beach State defeated UC San Diego in another five-set competition. It was the second year in a row the 49ers finished third in the tournament. Taylor Crabb led Long Beach to victory with 19 kills.
In the two consolation matches the host team defeated Loyola Chicago in straight sets and Cal Baptist took their match from Lewis in four.
Originally published in March/April 2013