Junior hitter Siki Zarkovic put down 20 kills, including the match-ender to tie his season high, and No. 6 Hawaii held on for a 24-26, 25-22, 30-28, 27-29, 15-13 win over No. 5 Pepperdine in a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation men’s volleyball match Sunday night at the Stan Sheriff Center.
Senior middle Taylor Averill added a career-high 19 kills, hitting .750 with just one error, and senior hitter Scott Hartley had a career-high 18 kills as the Rainbow Warriors (15-3, 12-2) moved into a first-place tie with UC Irvine (18-3, 12-2).
Senior opposite Brooke Sedore added 10 kills and junior libero Kolby Kanetake had a match-high 16 digs for Hawaii, winning its eighth straight.
Parker Kalmbach led Pepperdine (13-4, 9-4) with 20 kills and Punahou graduate Josh Taylor added 17. The match lasted 2 hours and 53 minutes.
After holding off one set point in Set 4, Hawaii had two swings at ending it in four, at 26-25 and 27-26. Zarkovic was called for lift and then blocked twice as the Waves tied the match at 2-2.
The Rainbow Warirors took what looked to be a commanding 11-6 lead in Set 5 only to have the Waves rally to tie at 12. A kill by Zarkovic gave Hawaii set point at 14-12 and, after a service error by UH setter Jennings Franciskovic, Zarkovic ended it with his 20th kill.
Hawaii finished with seven aces to Pepperdine’s four, including two each by Zarkovic, Averill and Sedor. The Waves out-blocked the Rainbow Warriors 13.5-11, Pepperdine’s Nikoa Antonievic in on match-high seven and Hawaii’s Davis Holt with a team-high sixth.