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College Notebook: Long Beach State Men’s Volleyball Stays Undefeated

After dropping the first set to visiting USC on Friday night, No. 5 Long Beach State men’s volleyball bounced back to win 18-25, 25-21, 25-15, 25-22. The Beach (4-0) has now won a program-record 44 straight matches at Walter Pyramid.

Redshirt sophomore outside hitter Spencer Olivier led the way for LBSU with a career-high 14 kills, 14 digs and four aces while hitting .417 on the night. Ethan Siegfried had 10 kills and Shane Holdaway chipped in 8 kills. Siegfried, Holdaway, Simon Andersen, and Marc Moody all posted six blocks.

PHOTOS: Long Beach State vs. USC Men’s Volleyball

LBSU Men’s Basketball

Unforced errors and mental mistakes doomed Long Beach State men’s basketball team in its 66-62 loss to visiting Cal State Fullerton on Saturday at Walter Pyramid. The Beach (6-14, 1-3) also lost to UC Davis 85-82 last week after a comeback fell short.

“It wasn’t a well played game but it was hard fought between two teams that really needed a win,” LBSU coach Dan Monson said on Saturday. “I feel for our guys because they fought hard enough to win. We just didn’t get it done.”

With the game tied and less than a minute left to play in regulation, LBSU guard Colin Slater had the ball stolen by Fullerton’s Brandon Kamga in front of the Beach bench. Kamga broke away into the open floor, and as he went up for the go-ahead lay up, LBSU sophomore Chance Hunter shoved him in the back. The Titans were awarded two free throws and the ball because of the intentional foul. Fullerton (6-13, 1-3) took the lead on the play and held on for the victory.

“I don’t feel like I helped them enough,” Monson said. “With 50 seconds left I had a timeout and I wanted a 2-for-1 but once Colin got off of that and was over by me I should’ve called a timeout and got us a little more organized.”

Monson said he agreed with the call that Hunter’s foul was intentional.

“He made a mistake,” Monson said. “I’m not making excuses but Chance is basically a freshman. It’s unfortunate and he feels awful. But we didn’t lose the game on that play… We have 11 new guys and we’re making mistakes like we’re all new guys.”

LBSU looked great in the first 10 minutes of the game as it opened on a 15-5 run. Fullerton caught fire from outside and went on a 19-3 run to take a 34-32 lead into halftime.

The Beach retook the lead for most of the second half until the Titans went ahead 53-51 thanks in part to LBSU’s 23 turnovers. Monson said his coaching staff counted 16 of those as unforced errors. Fullerton scored 22 points off of LBSU turnovers.

“Our fundamental decisions are horrendous right now,” Monson said. “If you give people that many chances, eventually it’s going to bite you.”

The game stayed close for the last six minutes, and Fullerton took advantage of being in the foul shot bonus. LBSU took a 60-59 lead with a minute to play on a Michael Carter III free throw, but the Beach only scored two more points in the game.

“We looked like a team that’s struggling and is inexperienced in close games,” Monson said. “We have to get in these situations to learn from them and we made some poor choices down the stretch.”

Slater led LBSU with a game-high 19 points and three assists.

“I feel like we’re trying to do the right things,” Slater said. “After we take tough losses we’re devastated because we feel like we shouldn’t lose games. We’re figuring it out and putting the pieces of the puzzle together.”

Hunter scored 16 points for LBSU while Carter III chipped in 12 points while playing with foul trouble. Freshman Joshua Morgan set a single-game school record with eight blocks.

LBSU hosts UC Irvine on Wednesday night to finish the homestand.

Long Beach State Men’s Basketball Edged By Fullerton

LBSU Women’s Basketball

The Beach (7-10, 2-2) gave Cal State Northridge its first Big West loss on Saturday with another strong defensive effort in a 60-52 win. LBSU forced 23 turnovers and held CSUN to 33.3 percent shooting from the field while building a 23 point lead in the second half.

Sophomore Justina King scored a game-high 23 points and redshirt sophomore Ma’Qhi Berry turned in an all-around solid performance with 11 points, six assists, five rebounds, and four steals.

LBCC Men’s Basketball

The No. 23 Vikings had their six-game winning streak snapped at East Los Angeles last week 83-68. LBCC (13-5) is ranked No. 23 in California.

LBSU Women’s Tennis

Senior Natalia Munoz opened the 2020 spring season by capturing the singles championship at the Beach Tennis Winter Invite with a three set win Sunday. LBSU closed out the three-day event with a 12-0 performance on Sunday.

LBCC Women’s Basketball

The Vikings (10-8) won two games last week against Pasadena and East Los Angeles in their last nonconference games.

JJ Fiddler
JJ Fiddler is an award-winning sportswriter and videographer who has been covering Southern California sports for multiple newspapers and websites since 2004. After attending Long Beach State and creating the first full sports page at the Union Weekly Newspaper, he has been exclusively covering Long Beach prep sports since 2007.