NCAA men: Long Beach keeps stranglehold on No. 1, UCI tops Pepperdine

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Pepperdine-UC Irvine-David Wieczorek-Joel Schneidmiller-Scott Stadick-Karl Apfelbach-NCAA men 1/28/2019
Pepperdine's David Wieczorek takes a swing against UCI's Joel Schneidmiller, Scott Stadick, and Karl Apfelbach/UC Irvine photo

Unbeaten Long Beach State remained an unanimous No. 1 in the AVCA Division I-II Men’s Coaches Poll, now No. 4 UC Irvine beat No. 6 Pepperdine in four, and the five conferences named their respective players of the week.

AVCA poll: Long Beach State (7-0) got all 16 votes for the fourth week in a row. Big West rival Hawai’i remained No. 2 but didn’t play a match, BYU moved up a spot while also remaining idle, and UCI dropped one notch to fourth.

UCLA jumped two spots to No. 5.

The rest of the top 10 shows Pepperdine, Loyola, Stanford, UC Santa Barbara and Lewis. USC at No. 15 got in for the first time, while Purdue Fort Wayne dropped out.

Click here for the complete AVCA poll. 

UCI tops Waves: The Anteaters (8-2) beat the MPSF visitors 25-23, 22-25, 26-24, 28-26. 

UCI got 13 kills apiece from Joel Schneidmiller, Aaron Koubi and Karl Apfelbach, who hit .303 and had three aces, nine digs and six blocks. Schneidmiller had 10 digs and two of his team’s seven aces, while Koubi had 11 digs and a block.

Pepperdine (5-2) got a huge effort from David Wieczorek, who had 22 kills, an assist, an ace, a solo block and four digs. Kaleb Denmark had 13 kills, eight digs and two blocks, and Michael Wexter had nine kills, an ace, 13 digs and three blocks, one solo.

Also Sunday, Quincy of the MIVA (3-4) beat Milwaukee School of Engineering in five and then lost to Saint Xavier, another Illinois school, in four. Omari Wheeler had 22 kills and hit .500 to go with eight digs, and three blocks, one solo in the first match. He had 19 more kills in the nightcap to go with 10 digs and a block.

EIVA POWs: The honors went to Saint Francis junior outside Michael Fisher and Penn State junior middle Jason Donorovich. Fisher, the offensive honoree, had 65 kills in three matches. Donorovich had 15 blocks, five solo, in a 3-0 week.

Conference Carolinas POW: Barton College junior right side Angelos Mandilaris had 38 kills and hit .429 and had 12 digs, seven aces and six blocks in two victories to open the conference season. His brother Vasilis won the award twice previously this season.

Big West POWs: Corey Chavers of UC Santa Barbara, which scored two victories over top-10 teams, is the player of the week after getting 39 kills in those wins. The senior outside also had nine digs and six blocks. UC Irvine junior middle Scott Stadick averaged 1.67 blocks over 12 sets to get the defensive honor. And UCSB outside Ryan Wilcox took the freshman honor after averaging 2.86 kills.

MPSF: USC senior opposite Ryan Moss is the offensive honoree after getting 30 kills and hitting .439 against UC Irvine and Long Beach State. Stanford senior libero Kyle Dagostino averaged 3.14 digs in two wins.

MIVA: Colton Stone of the Purdue Fort Wayne Mastodons is the offensive, while Luke Denton of the Loyola Ramblers is the defensive honoree.

Stone, a senior opposite, averaged 4.29 kills in two matches, while Denton, a freshman opposite, had nine blocks and 13 digs in two losses.

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