This Week at Pepperdine: April 7-13
April 7, 2014
MALIBU, Calif. - The baseball team and women's tennis squad - both in first place in the West Coast Conference - have multiple home games this week. The men's volleyball team wraps up the MPSF regular season in Firestone Fieldhouse twice vs. Hawaii this weekend looking to clinch a first-round home match in the MPSF Tournament.
This weekend in Hermosa Beach, the sand volleyball team has one of its final chances to impress before the AVCA National Championships. The men's tennis team is in the Bay Area for two WCC matches, the men's golf team is in Washington and the track team will compete at Pomona-Pitzer.
Lisa Santroch of the track team opens up This Week at Pepperdine, and interviews take place baseball players Aaron Brown (the WCC Pitcher of the Week) and Aaron Barnett, men's volleyball players Matt West and Kyle Gerrans, and Lorraine Guillermo of women's tennis.
Here's an in-depth look at the week's events:
Tuesday: vs. USC (Eddy D. Field Stadium), 3 p.m.
After going 4-0 last week, the #24 Pepperdine baseball team returns home for four games at Eddy D. Field Stadium this week. The Waves host USC on Tuesday in the second non-conference matchup between the two teams this season and then welcome BYU for a three-game WCC series starting on Thursday. The Waves look to build on their momentum after grabbing the top spot in the conference standings with a sweep of then-first place Saint Mary's last weekend.
Friday: vs. Hawaii (Firestone Fieldhouse), 7 p.m.
The #2 Pepperdine men's volleyball team wraps up the regular season with a pair of matches vs. #9 Hawaii on Friday and Saturday. The Waves have already locked a spot in the MPSF Tournament, and now set their sights on securing a top-four seed. The MPSF Tournament consists of the top four seeds hosting the bottom four seeds in the quarterfinals on April 19, with the top remaining seed hosting the semifinals and final the following week. Although it might not be necessary for Pepperdine to win another match to clinch a home match, the Waves can control their own destiny with one victory vs. the Rainbow Warriors. Meanwhile, UH will be hungry for a sweep versus the Waves in order to guarantee its own postseason berth. Hawaii enters this week in a three-way tie for eighth place in the MPSF standings after beating first-place BYU twice last week in Honolulu.
WOMEN'S SAND VOLLEYBALL
Saturday-Sunday: at USA Volleyball Beach Collegiate Challenge (Hermosa Beach, Calif.)
Pepperdine, currently ranked #2 in the AVCA rankings, battles at the annual USAV Beach Collegiate Challenge this Friday and Saturday in Hermosa Beach, just north of the pier. The Waves have experienced tremendous success at the event, even before sand volleyball was officially added to the NCAA's list of emerging sports. Pepperdine has won the team championship three years running after sharing co-champ honors with USC in 2010. In pairs championship action, the Waves have topped the podium in four of the last five seasons. Caitlin Racich won back-to-back pairs titles, first with Kim Hill in 2011 and again in 2012 alongside Summer Ross. Hill and Lilla Frederick took home top honors in 2013. A tough field consisting of #1 USC, #3 Hawaii, #6 UCLA, Arizona, LMU, Santa Clara and CSU Bakersfield will put Pepperdine to the test as the team approaches the AVCA National Championship next month.
Friday: vs. Pacific (Ralphs-Straus Tennis Center), 1:30 p.m.
The #29 Pepperdine women's tennis team puts its nine-match win streak on the line this Friday against. Pacific. The Waves then get set for a showdown vs. #42 Saint Mary's - the second-highest ranked team in the West Coast Conference behind Pepperdine and the preseason favorite. SMC enters the match with just one league loss, a 5-2 upset at BYU, while the Waves are 6-0 in league play. Last season, Pepperdine lost to the Gaels during the regular-season meeting before upsetting the top-seeded Gaels 4-0 in the WCC Tournament championship match. Not only will Saturday's meeting be a showdown between the top-two highest ranked teams in the league, it's likely that the top-two highest ranked individuals will also duke it out. #8 Jenny Jullien, the 2013 WCC Player of the Year, and #25 Lorraine Guillermo, the 2012 WCC Freshman of the Year, will likely resume their rivalry on Saturday with Jullien holding a 2-1 advantage. Guillermo's win clinched the Waves' 4-0 victory over SMC during the 2013 WCC Tournament.
Friday: at Pacific (Stockton, Calif.), 2 p.m.
The Waves, tied for first place in the WCC standings along with San Diego, have two matches on tap this week beginning on Friday with a dual at Pacific. On Saturday, Pepperdine takes on Saint Mary's. The Waves are a perfect 6-0 in the league this season, and a staggering 132-3 all-time vs. West Coast Conference opponents.
Monday-Tuesday: at Redhawk Invitational (University Place, Wash.)
The men's golf team has its last chance to get ready for the postseason, as the Waves close out the regular season at Seattle University's Redhawk Invitational. Pepperdine is coming off a strong fourth-place finish at the ASU Thunderbird Invitational, as well as a match-play victory against Brown. The tournament is being held at Chambers Bay, site of the 2015 U.S. Open Championship.
Saturday: at Pomona-Pitzer Invitational (Claremont, Calif.)
A full contingent of runners returns to the track this weekend for the Pomona-Pitzer Invitational. A smaller group competed at the Cal/Nevada Collegiate Championships this past weekend at UC San Diego. Several runners made updates on the school's all-time top five list, including Stasia Demick (#2 in the 800 meters), Lisa Santroch (#2 in the steeplechase), Lindsay Sheaffer (#3 in the 1,500 meters) and Elle Lemco (#4 in the 10,000 meters).