Visiting UC Santa Barbara stopped Big West champion Hawaii’s 10-match winning streak with a hard-fought five-set victory tonight, closing the conference season for both teams.
The Gauchos used a strong block to slow down the Wahine attack on UH’s Senior Night in front of 3,305 at SimpliFi Arena at the Stan Sheriff Center. UCSB, which also beat UH with a sweep in California on Oct. 22, won 18-25, 25-21, 25-23, 20-25, 15-12.
By virtue of its conference championship clinched Friday against Cal State Northridge, Hawaii advances to the NCAA Tournament. The Wahine learn where and whom they play in Sunday’s selection show on ESPNU.
UH fell to 18-2 in the Big West and 21-6 overall. UCSB finished second in the Big West at 16-4 and improved to 21-11 overall.
Rowan Ennis was involved in eight of the Gauchos’ 16 blocks and had 12 kills. Abrielle Bross led UCSB with 16 kills.
Brooke Van Sickle, one of three UH seniors honored at her final home match, was match-high with 21 kills. Defensive specialist Janelle Gong and middle Skyler Williams were also honored.
Riley Wagoner added had 18 kills for UH.